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Village residents asked for traffic calming measures on street where 8-year-old killed while riding her bike

Amber Cameron killed in collision with bus yesterday morning in Elderslie, Renfrewshire

Residents of a street in a village near Glasgow where an eight year old girl was killed in a collision with a bus yesterday have spoken of how their calls for the local authority to introduce traffic calming measures had gone unheeded.

Amber Cameron died at the scene of the incident, which took place at 10.55 yesterday morning in Elderslie, Renfrewshire, close to Paisley and two miles southwest of Glasgow Airport. She was off school as a result of the Jubilee bank holiday.

Herald Scotland reports that the fatal collision, which involved a single decker bus, happened after Amber had ridden down a narrow pathway to Barclay Avenue.

One witness told the website: "I heard a thump and a screech of metal and I jumped up to the window.

"The wee girl was lying on the road. The driver had got out but I knew she was gone. Her bike was under the bus."

Herald Scotland added that there are a number of families living on the street who have young children, and that the council has been repeatedly requested to put in place traffic calming measures such as speed bumps, but nothing has been done to date.

One neighbour, Elizabeth Harkins, explained: "There are streets close by that have speed bumps but there is nothing here. There have been other accidents."

Another resident said: "The road can be bad at times. It's supposed to be a 'twenty's plenty', but drivers don't always stick to that. Now and again when they get a clear run at it they'll go a bit faster."

Amber’s parents Duncan and Michelle were reported to be too upset to make a comment yesterday.

One local said: "We just missed the accident. We went for a walk and when we came back we saw all the police and the ambulance.

"The police were going round the streets trying to find the girl's parents. It's shocking that something like this has happened right on our doorstep. I really feel for the girl's parents."

Quoted in The Scotsman, Susan Carlton, the head teacher at Amber’s school, Wallace Primary School, said: “This has been a very sad day for the school. Amber was a lovely little girl who loved learning and thrived in all school activities, particularly arts which she especially liked.

“She was very popular with classmates and will be sadly missed. We have been helping pupils talk and react in their own way and further support and counselling is available if required.

“The thoughts of the whole school community are with Amber’s family. At an appropriate time, and with the agreement of Amber’s family, we will look to commemorate the time Amber had with us and the contribution she made to the life of the school.”

Strathclyde Police said that a report on the incident would be lodged with the Procurator Fiscal and that it was continuing with its inquiries.

Anyone with information regarding the incident is requested to call Sergeant Jane Taylor at the Divisional Road Policing Unit in Greenock on 01475 492537, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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jackh | 11 years ago

Couldn't agree more with the criticisms of traffic calming measures. A nightmare for cyclists and pedestrians, they seem to bring out the absolute worst behaviour in some drivers.

Getting driven at by oncoming vehicles, cut up through pinch points, speed bumps that do absolutely nothing... Terrible, terrible designs.

Chiswick | 11 years ago

Traffic calming measures can be a two-edged sword. There is an instance of this in Houghton, Carlisle in Cumbria where the council narrowed the road at opposite ends to give priority to the vehicle that got into the system first; effectively a bottleneck at both ends of the bottle. The result is that cars accelerate to beat the oncoming car before they have chance to reach the narrowed part. This is bad enough for car drivers but potentially lethal for cyclists as we are disregarded in most cases. I have had cars drive at me for my temerity to assert my rights. Pedestrians too are often ignored in the rush to beat the oncoming vehicle. The term 'traffic calming' can in fact induce 'traffic rage'. Better to have a speed limit properly enforced.

giff77 | 11 years ago

@HK - I am in agreement with you on traffic calming measures but it should be noted that this avenue reasonably wide with minimal on street parking as the houses have their own driveways. It's layout only serves to encourage speeding.

The bus company involved is notorious for speeding, discourteous drivers. Yesterday, one of their drivers attempted to prevent me maintain my prmary position when moving off from a set of lights, he then passed me by less than a car door and swung the rear of his vehicle in missing my front wheel by inches. Obviously the fact that one of his colleagues had been involved in a collision resulting in the death of a child has made no impact on his skils or lack of, as a driver. A friend also commented on the speed at which this particular company's vehicles were travelling at.

I will be observing their drivers and writting to the company if I do not see a marked improvement in driving and attitude to other road users.

Paul J replied to giff77 | 11 years ago

The bus company seems to be McGill's. They cross my path regularly at Finnieston bridge, and I've written a letter of complaint to McGill's before, without reply - so I put it on my blog. I've since had one or two replies, possibly from drivers, which possibly suggest there is very strong management pressure on them to meet unrealistic schedules:

HKCambridge | 11 years ago

It's not clear that speed actually played a part in this. I'm very much behind 20s plenty, but a bus is many times more massive than a car and could easily kill a child while keeping to 20.

And speed bumps are an awful traffic calming device: they encourage people to accelerate dangerously between bumps, they distract drivers from watching for cyclists and pedestrians, they're horrible to cycle over and the constant acceleration and breaking is less environmentally friendly than keeping a consistent speed.

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