This is a moment a car makes an illegal turn onto an Inverness street right into the path of a women and three children.
Councillors are up in arms over the “irresponsible drivers” who are choosing to ignore the no left turn sign at a busy city centre junction – warning they are putting lives in danger.
Vehicles have been spotted turning left from Huntly Street onto Ness Bridge, crossing the paths of walkers who are expecting traffic to go straight ahead onto Ness Walk or right onto Young Street.
The restriction on Huntly Street was agreed at the Inverness area committee in September 2014, while the road was still closed during the River Ness flood alleviation scheme.
Councillors feared the riverside route would be used as a rat run by drivers frustrated with traffic queues on Kenneth Street if no restriction was put in place.
On one occasion, a photographer who observed the junction for the P&J, counted three cars flouting the rule in just five-10 minutes.
Another time he saw about 15 cars in as many minutes ignore the signs.
The revelation last night sparked fresh calls from some councillors and community councillors for a rethink on the restriction.
Police confirmed yesterday that the Inverness City Centre community beats teams have received “a few” reports in recent months about drivers turning left – as well as general parking issues – and have incorporated this into their patrol plans and will continue to monitor the issue.
A spokeswoman said: “Officers would continue to encourage anyone who encounters inconsiderate driving or parking to make contact via 101. Failing to obey a road sign can carry a fine and a three point penalty.”
Inverness central councillor Donnie Kerr said: “The real safety issue here is with pedestrians, and it’s a very busy junction. There are some people who don’t have a clue how to
“I suspect drivers are choosing to ignore the sign because of a lack of police presence or traffic wardens. You always get people who don’t spot the signs, particularly tourists, but
local drivers are doing it and it’s just irresponsible.”
Inverness Central councillor Bet McAllister said: “You have to abide by the signs, they are there for a reason.
“There is the potential for an accident to happen and someone getting knocked down. People won’t expect cars to come round the corner and there are lots of schools in that area.”
But Richie Paxton, chairman of Park Community Council and owner of Westbourne Guest House in Huntly Street, was more concerned about the restriction itself. He said: “This administration are doing their best to stop people going into the city centre.
“You have to stop the traffic to let cars turn right or go straight ahead anyway. The no left turn does not serve any purpose. All of these tourists are coming down and they see the river and they see a sign at the Greig Street Bridge for about four seconds warning them of the no left turn ahead.
“They need to put the left turn back in. They U-turned on the gold cladding and the tilting pier, so why not with this?”
Inverness councillor Janet Campbell, who has raised concerns in the past about the restriction, said: “I don’t condone the flouting of any law, but I continue to be extremely disappointed that a no left turn restriction was initially approved to reportedly address ‘rat running’ in Huntly Street.
“I received many complaints when this restriction was first reported. Objectors flagged up the impact it would have on east-side motorists associated with local businesses, churches and taxis – all having to take a long detour back around the city to get to their respective destinations. This proves time consuming and expensive, particularly for taxi users who may have limited income.”
Mrs Campbell added that she will be discussing the matter with council officers with a view to retrospectively exploring a revised resolution.