Call for action after pensioner's dog killed by speeding driver

Roddy Hill's beloved dog Milo was killed by a driver on a road described as a 'rat race'

Call for action after pensioner’s dog killed by speeding driver in Livingston LDRS

Neighbours in a Livingston street have raised a petition demanding action against speeding drivers after a series of incidents culminated in a pet dog being killed.

The dog’s owner Roddy Hill told councillors at a meeting of West Lothian Council’s Executive that the driver had stopped after hitting the dog and shouted at him before speeding off.

And he said he feared for the safety of youngsters who played in the area: “I don’t want to see a hearse with a wee coffin in it.”

Mr Hill and his neighbour Evie Johnston presented a petition to the council asking for safety measures in Glen Crescent in Deans, Livingston, a narrow residential road clearly marked at each with green-ringed 20mph signs.

The death of Mr Hill’s dog, Milo, in April came after a series of incidents where neighbours had their cars shunted by passing motorists, as they tried to reverse out of their driveways. Another has had her garden wall demolished twice by a speeding vehicle.

Miss Johnston told the Executive that many young families now lived in the area with children of nursery and primary age going to nearby schools. The street has also become far busier with the growing use of delivery vans.

Glen Road has speed bumps on it and drivers avoid them by driving around Glen Crescent. 

Ms Johnston told councillors: “Glen Crescent is a rat run.” 

Mr Hill told councillors Milo had been trained to stop at the kerb.  Mr Hill had been getting out of his own car when another sped along the road. Mr Hill  said “heard the thump” and realised Milo had been struck.

“As we got to the dog, the driver stopped his car, got out and shouted at me to keep my dog on a leash before driving off, we were tending to the dog. I never saw the number plate, but we reported it to the police.

“Our worry is that it could easily have been a child running out to collect a ball and being hit by a car.”

The petition to the council said: “Despite there being a clear 20mph speed limit, these vehicles constantly race across the crescent.”

“This resulted very recently in the tragic, completely unnecessary, death of a much-loved pet dog.

“Glen Crescent is a strong community and this incident powerfully reinforced how much the street has changed in recent years.

“Where once we were an ‘older’ group of residents, we now have numerous households with nursery, primary and secondary age children and have to acknowledge the risk to us all.

“The installation of traffic calming measures at both ends of Glen Crescent has become imperative.”

Councillors expressed their sympathies for the loss of the pet.

Roads Network Manager Gordon Brown revealed a list of projects which have had spending agreed for this financial year.

He faced questions from councillors around the chamber as to why anecdotal and neighbours’ evidence on speeding couldn’t be considered when considering spending on road safety.

Mr Brown said that the council had to rely on strict rules laid down by Transport Scotland and only accident data reported to the police could be used to “score” the need for road safety works at sites where there had been serious or fatal accidents.

Damage to property or pets killed by speeding drivers would not be considered.

He added that a full survey of hazard potential would need to be carried out in Glen Crescent before any action could be taken.

Mr Hill and Miss Johnston had been accompanied to the meeting by local ward Conservative councillor Alison Adamson, who does not serve on the Executive. 

Councillor Adamson told the Local Democracy Reporting Service after the that she shared the fears of Glen Crescent residents and added: “Milo was quite a local celebrity, and a firm favourite with the local kids.”

Fellow ward member Labour’s Anne McMillan, who sits on the Executive, asked if Glen Crescent and the surrounding area could be considered in a future road safety analysis.

Councillors agreed and asked for a survey of the Glen Crescent and Glen Road area to be carried out to be potentially included in  future works planned for 2025/26.

The safety works at five sites across the county include resurfacing with anti-skid material, new warning signs  and traffic islands. Councillor gave the go ahead  for work to start.

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