Jun 30 2010 by Michael Pringle, Airdrie & Coatbridge
THE FAMILY of an Airdrie pensioner killed by a bus believe that the junction at Airdrie Cross should be made safer.
Martha Cowie (89) was knocked down after collecting her shopping from W Young Family Butchers shop last Monday, June 21.
The Burnfoot pensioner was crossing the road when she was hit by the bus as it turned from Broomknoll Street into Stirling Street, and she died later in hospital.
Now Martha’s daughters Marion Anderson and Fiona Billingham, who are still trying to come to terms with their mum’s death, have called for the road to be made safer.
Marion said: “It’s far too narrow there for buses to be turning. Mum knew the road well as she was in the butchers’ shop at least twice a week.
“She might have been 89 but she was a sprightly woman for her age and we didn’t deserve for her to be taken away like that.
“She suffered a violent death and her injuries were horrific – we feel like we’ve been robbed.”
The two sisters have also appealed for anyone who witnessed the incident to contact police.
“We just want answers,” Marion added. “We’ve heard that mum was in the middle of the road.
“If anyone witnessed it then you can help us and help others by preventing anything like this happening again.”
Locals believe an accident at the busy junction was inevitable.
Airdrie South Councillor Michael Coyle said: “It was an accident waiting to happen. There’s a crossing, but the bus stops are very close to the junction, and then there are taxis and motorists double-parking.
“The main problem is that we need a longer period of time between the green man on the crossing at Bank Street, and the red light on the traffic signal at Broomknoll Street.
“I also think the taxi rank is on the wrong side of the street so the drivers are doing U-turns and adding to the problems. Drivers are then getting impatient and jumping the lights.”
Advertiser reader Brian Murphy of Lammermuir Way, Chapelhall, predicted an accident when he wrote to us at the start of the month to voice his concerns over the traffic lights.
He said: “There hasn’t been a day in the past six months where the town centre has not been gridlocked due to the lights going out of sequence.
“Drivers are having to go through red lights due to pressure from those caught in jams behind and it’s surely only a matter of time before there is a serious accident from this situation.”
A spokesman for North Lanarkshire Council, who are responsible for the roads and traffic signals at the junction, said: “We are currently investigating this incident jointly with Strathclyde Police and therefore it would be inappropriate to comment at this stage.”
For readers’ views on Airdrie town centre traffic see: You Said It on page 45 of your Advertiser.