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Last Updated: Tuesday, 10 July 2007, 11:11 GMT 12:11 UK
'Deadly junction' upgrade begins
Crash scene on A9
More than 80 fatal collisions have occurred on the A9 since 2002
Work has begun on improving safety at a notorious junction on the A9 in Perthshire.

The Ballinluig junction, near Aberfeldy, will benefit from a 15m upgrade in a bid to reduce the high number of accidents on the A9.

Between 1997 and 2006 six people died in 11 accidents at the site and another 14 were left injured.

Local MSP John Swinney, who campaigned for improvements to the junction, was on site to see construction work begin.

A fly-over to replace right hand turns, which currently lead into the path of oncoming traffic, will be constructed at the junction.

Local access will also be improved with a 600m section of the A9 being upgraded to dual carriageway.

Work to improve the road, which is the main route from Central Scotland to the Highlands, is expected to take about 12 months to complete.

Some of the accidents we have had here have been absolutely unbelievable
Clive Bridges

Clive Bridges, the owner of Ballinluig services, said along with many terrible crashes, he has also seen plenty of near-misses.

"Some of the accidents we have had here have been absolutely unbelievable," he said.

"Since the 50mph limit has been put on it, the accident rate without a doubt has dropped. But it's still frightfully dangerous."

Mr Swinney, the Scottish government secretary for finance and sustainable growth, was at the roadside in his North Tayside constituency to perform the ground breaking ceremony.

"The community in Ballinluig will join me in looking forward to summer 2008 when we will have our vital fly-over junction in place," he said.

"Today marks a significant step forward for road safety in Perthshire and the whole of Scotland, as well as improving traffic flow on this section of the A9 for locals and visitors alike."

The A9 is the main route linking Central Scotland with the Highlands, with approximately 12,000 vehicles a day using the section between Perth and Inverness.

More than 80 fatal collisions have occurred since 2002, making it one of the most dangerous roads in Scotland.

Transport Scotland, the executive's transport agency, will be delivering the road improvement.

John Swinney MSP speaks about the junction

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