Motorcyclist’s anger over council’s road attitude

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A MOTORCYCLIST has hit out at what he calls Dumfries and Galloway Council’s disregard for road safety following an accident which he was “very lucky to have survived”.

Kenny Brown was one of 15 bikers using the A712, highlighted in The Galloway Gazette recently after reports of its dangerous road surface, when he came off his bike.

The Scottish Ducati Club ride-out takes in the New Galloway road as part of its Galloway tour, but doubts have been cast as to whether the club will use the road again.

On 24 July, Kenny was enjoying the ride on his Ducati 749 when he passed Clatteringshaws and noticed a change in the road surface.

He said: “It changed from a normal road to loose chippings abruptly, with no road signs whatsoever to advise that this was to happen. The movement of the cars along the road had caused the loose chippings to form piles in the middle of the road, at the edges of the road and also in the centre of both lanes.

“I unfortunately hit the centre of the lane I was on and completely lost control of my bike due to the large amount of loose chippings on it.”

Kenny came off his bike - which he says was in prime condition beforehand - and knocked himself out. He came to on the other side of the road to find his official Ducati leathers completely shredded, his sturdy Ducati helmet worn through and his boots and gloves badly damaged.

He was taken to RAH Paisley Hospital where consultants told him the only way made it through the accident was “by the grace of God.”

Kenny added: “I was kept in due to suspected internal bleeding and further incurred days off work due to bruised ribs and neck pain. My bike, needless to say, has been completely written off by my insurer, Royal Sun Alliance.

“I also incurred costs for the uplift and delivery of my bike to the dealership. All of this could have been avoided had there been the appropriate road signage in place and I feel that this is the responsibility of the Roads Department.”

Kenny made an official complaint to Dumfries and Galloway Council regarding the road surface and lack of signage, but was told they would not take any responsibility for the incident.

He said: “I am deeply disheartened at the way the council are trying to deny all responsibility for this stretch of road saying that it had been properly swept before my accident. I have since had correspondence from their lawyers who are also denying responsibility and I am now in the process of taking this further legally.

“It is only a matter of time before someone is killed on this stretch of road and I am very lucky to have survived my accident.”

A council spokeswoman said: “All claims for compensation sent to the council are regarded as public liability insurance claims. There is no automatic right to compensation and legal liability has to be established for a claim to be successful. All insurance claims are passed to the Council’s insurers for an independent investigation and adjudication in terms of liability. Our council is not involved in the adjudication process for any claim.”