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Roads petition

Considerable stretches of Argyll and Bute’s roads are in poor condition, with inadequate carriageway width and alignment. Real investment is needed in the trunk roads maintained by the Scottish Government, to ensure that our roads meet the demands of a modern transport system: LGVs are larger and heavier than ever, and our roads are simply crumbling away into the lochs, like Digestives into coffee.

 To cite just one example: it is a nonsense that there has been a set of ‘temporary’ traffic lights on the A82 north of Tarbert for 30 years now.

Furthermore, there is an unacceptable level of fatal accidents on our roads, significantly higher than the Scottish average; the ensuing road closures have a real impact on local businesses, and can mean detours of over 40 miles for people just wanting to get home.

 Road safety is an issue that is shared between Edinburgh and Westminster: we need to look at a number of methods for reducing accidents – increasing road patrols to curb excessive speed is one of them. I would also be in favour of straightening out a number of the worst blind corners at accident blackspots – not always popular with those who enjoy driving their sports cars at speed along the roads, as was pointed out to me by one such driver yesterday, but I am more concerned about the length of time it takes an ambulance to get from Inveraray to Paisley.

 The Scottish Conservatives have long advocated that a special multi-million pound fund should be set aside by the Scottish Government and used to target the most dangerous stretches of roads and junctions. this ‘Black Spot Funding programme’ has so far been rejected by the Government, but it is a model that works successfully elsewhere; it won’t prevent every accident from taking place, but it would significantly reduce them and help save lives.

Pressure must be put on the Scottish Government to make a commitment to long-term investment in our trunk roads, and to tackle accident blackspots.

 I have started a petition, which I am in the process of turning into an e-petition. Once I have done so, I will have a link on this site.

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