Councillor calls for action after dog is hit by cyclist

A cyclist ran over the neck of a small dog as he cut through a two-metre gap between her owner and another walker.

Thursday, 18th March 2021, 12:53 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th March 2021, 5:23 pm
Alba had a lucky escape
Alba had a lucky escape

Alba, a white miniature schnauzers owned by Bonnyrigg councillor Dianne Alexander, was struck as her owner stood talking to a lady and her young daughter on the Bonnyrigg to Penicuik railway path.

Councillor Alexander said that her eight-year-old pet escaped serious injury after rolling out of the way of the back wheel of the bicycle as it sped over her.

She is calling for action to tackle cyclists speeding on the path and failing to use their bells to warn pedestrians.

She said: “The problem is with cyclists who speed down the path and give no signal they are coming up behind you or through your group.

“There is no direct legislation that can reduce their speed limit, but something needs to be done before there is a tragedy of greater proportions.”

Councillor Alexander called on officials to investigate ways to make the route safe for all users during a virtual meeting of Midlothian Council’s performance review and scrutiny committee.

Following the incident, the cyclist stopped and apologised, and Alba recovered without needing vet treatment.

Councillor Alexander said: “She had a terrible scare, though fortunately it was not as tragic as it could have been.

“I did not take her to the vet because she was absolutely traumatised as it was, she was able to walk and we kept an eye on her.”

The councillor said concerns had been raised about the pathway, which is used by walkers, cyclists and horse riders in the past, but the main issue was to do with speeding cyclists.

She said: “We do not get time to bring our children or pets close in, and then there are older or infirm people who cannot move quickly.

“All adult cycles have by law to be sold with a bell, the Highway Code says that cyclists should give way to pedestrians.”

Council leader Derek Milligan asked council officials to talk to ward councillors about what action could be taken to make the pathway safer.

He said: “Unfortunately this is not the first incident of this kind to have been reported and it is a concern for users of the pathway.”