Farmer’s plea for road to be safer

Hazardous: The bend on the road and the flooding water from the ditch was shown by Peter Lancaster to police and council officials.
Hazardous: The bend on the road and the flooding water from the ditch was shown by Peter Lancaster to police and council officials.

A local farmer is urging Aberdeenshire council officials and Grampian Police to address the problem of road accidents caused on the Mintlaw to Rora road.

Peter Lancaster of Boghead Farm claims that there has been around 35 accidents on a bend in the road resulting in many cars crashing into his fence on his farm.

According to the police and the council only 6 of these accidents have been reported. Unless there are injuries, damage to another vehicle or an obstruction in the road, it does not need to be reported to the police. However, if damage is caused on Mr Lancaster’s property the guilty party should contact him to compensate him for the damage.

The main issue causing the accidents is the problem with water spilling on to the road from ditches on the side of the road. In winter this is very hazardous as it causes large areas of ice to be frozen on the road.

Last Monday Mr Lancaster invited the council and police to have a look at the area and try to find a solution to the problem.

Mr Lancaster said:

“I’ve invited the council and police down here to show them the problem with water which has been an issue for 12 months although I do my best to clean it up.

“The road network should be maintaining these ditches for the safety of the road users because it is a busy road as many people drive this way to Peterhead or the gas terminal at St Fergus.

“There has been 35 accidents and because the road isn’t gritted in winter it’s like glass. People don’t realise that because its not a sharp bend and the visibility is good in front of them that they can go flying past but many have realised this is not the case.

Head of transportation Ewan Wallace said: “We work closely with Grampian Police following road accidents in our area to assess their cause and we regularly monitor trends to look at areas where risks of accidents are higher.

“The safety of road users is our highest priority and we can assure people that we will be looking into the matter. We met with Mr Lancaster last week alongside Grampian Police to discuss the issues he raises regarding safety.

“We also urge motorists to drive carefully and to take action as regards road conditions and warning signs.”

A spokesperson from Aberdeenshire Council who came to look at the area Mr Lancaster highlighted ensured said he would recommend work to go ahead to stop the flooding on to the road and to look into getting appropriate signs up to make drivers aware of the dangers on the road.

Mintlaw Road Policing Officer, Robin Smith said:

“After coming down to see the bend and talking to Mr Lancaster we would advise drivers to be cautious when driving down this road and around the bend.

“Road users should also take into account the road conditions and in bad weather drive at an appropriate speed and caution.”