“Extremely worrying” figures have shown 57% of all speeding offences caught on camera on the A90 between Stonehaven and Dundee in the last year took place at the notorious Laurencekirk junction.
Between October 2019 and the end of September, data from Safety Cameras Scotland shows there were a total of 7,424 speeding offences caught by the average speed camera system from Stonehaven to Dundee.
In total, 4,248 were recorded in the 50mph section as the road passes Laurencekirk and has a junction with the A937 Laurencekirk to Montrose road.
The remaining speeders were caught along the rest of the road from Stonehaven to Dundee.
A long-awaited £24 million flyover project for the site, which has been the location of numerous crashes and near misses over the years, is currently being worked on by Transport Scotland.
But there are fears that four objectors could cause a public inquiry, delaying the project even further.
North-east regional Conservative MSP Liam Kerr, who has been campaigning for safety improvement at the junction for years, said: “These statistics should act as a wake-up call for the Scottish Government to get out of first gear and push forward with the upgrade, sooner rather than later.
“It’s extremely worrying to see the extent of speeding offense along the whole stretch of the A90, but the figures highlight just how dangerous it is at Laurencekirk for those trying to get on or across the carriageway.
“Every time you approach the Laurencekirk junction to get on to the A90, you fear for your life and this needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.
“A spade has yet to hit the ground despite accidents repeatedly happening at the junction which is why the Scottish Government needs to sit round the table and iron out the concerns from the four parties who have objected.”
From October 2018 to the end of September 2019, there were a total of 11,483 speeding offences caught by average speed cameras on the A90 from Dundee to Stonehaven, and during that period 6,791 of them took place in the 50mph zone at Laurencekirk – around 59% of the total.
There were fewer vehicles on the road this year due to the pandemic.
Neil Greig, policy and research director at IAM Roadsmart, formerly the Institute of Advanced Motorists, added: “These figures are quite shocking as compliance with average speed cameras is normally very high but at Laurencekirk they do not appear to be as effective as elsewhere.
“This is clearly putting the users of the junction at higher risk.”
Of the four objecting parties, one is Aberdeenshire Council, which has signalled it could soon withdraw its complaint, and the others are local landowners.
A spokesman for Transport Scotland said: “The Scottish Government is committed to completing the A90/A937 Laurencekirk Junction Improvement as soon as possible.
“The outcome of Aberdeenshire Council’s structural assessment of Oatyhill Bridge, and specifically its decision to close the bridge has an impact on the delivery of the Laurencekirk scheme as currently proposed.
“We continue to work closely with Aberdeenshire Council, as the Roads Authority with responsibility for maintaining the bridge, and other affected parties, to bring forward a resolution to the issue.”
Superindenet Simon Bradshaw added: “Travelling over the speed limit is unacceptable, it is a maximum limit and not a target and I would remind all road users that we all have a responsibility to use the road safely.
“It is important to remember that the A90 at Laurencekirk is a dual carriageway used by all types of vehicles, including tractors and other agricultural vehicles and has a number of junction and cross-overs.
“Driving in excess of the speed limit increases the risk of a collision and the likelihood of serious or fatal injuries if a collision occurs.
“Officers patrol the road network on a daily basis in marked and unmarked vehicles, including areas with a high collision history, in order to detect illegal driving behaviour and educate motorists about the importance of driving safely.
“Police Scotland and the Safety Camera Partnership will continue to rigorously enforce the speed limit on this road.”