Renewed calls have been made to address "boy racer" concerns at each end of the Largs to Skelmorlie coastal road.

Largs Community Council discussed the issue at a recent meeting - with concerns raised over speeding dangers.

Council chairman Jim Phillips told the meeting that the matter needed addressed urgently before a serious crash happens.

Jim said: "It is another accident waiting to happen.

"On a recent Friday evening, I was overtaken twice by boy racers at the stretch coming into Skelmorlie, right at the bend as you are coming through to the Inverclyde Kitchen. And then I can see the brake lights flashing like mad."

Gerry McDonald, who lives in Hollywood apartments, claims the speeding problem has never been as bad.

Largs and Millport Weekly News: Gerry McDonaldGerry McDonald (Image: Newsquest)

He pointed out that vehicles are moving up to well over 30mph in the zone in advance of the 40mph limit, leaving Largs for Skelmorlie.

Gerry said it is a hazard for older people crossing the road to use the local bus stop, and believes more traffic calming measures are needed.

He was told that the average speed in that area was 39.5 miles per hour - and pointed out: "There were two set of speed recordings in the area. That means a lot of people are doing well over the limit if that is only the average. We are staying in a place where there are a lot of elderly residents.

"A lot of people cross the road and it is a lottery - somebody is going to be killed, and maybe that is the only way it is going to be solved. 

"The millions it takes to report on a fatal road accident - and so on, surely Amey should be told, that in this road, you need better traffic management.

"I accept you can't put speed bumps there as you have ambulances etc, but there is quite clearly traffic management that is needed that wil stop people driving at excessive speed. You turn at the Willowbank Hotlel, and that flashing speed sign as you are leaving Largs is now like a badge of honour for boy racers.

North Coast Independent councillor Ian Murdoch said: "This is historic. It has been going on for years. It has been asked and raised, and to be addressed so many times, it is exactly the same in Skelmorlie which is horrendous for speeding in the 30s zone.

Largs and Millport Weekly News: Police regularly monitor Skelmorlie stretchPolice regularly monitor Skelmorlie stretch (Image: Newsquest)

"Amey and Transport Scotland are in charge of the trunk road - nothing has been done until recently when there was a reaction to install a 40mph limit between the two national speed limits, out in the open 60mph limit out in the open road - to me personally I have driven professionally around the UK and Europe - and saw no need for this particular measure.

"They have done nothing about where the issue is - which is at the two carriageway entrances at the north gateway of Largs and the south gateway of Skelmorlie.

"The problem is that they are still doing 40mph when they are going through the 30mph zone in Skelmorlie."

"There are over seven miles of either 30mph or 40mph zones between Largs and Inverkp Power Station - it is bonkers; they need to address the speeding within the 30mph and 40mph limit, and put the 60mph back on the Amey road.

"I have raised it over and over again; and I will raise it again, but Transport Scotland and Amey are a law unto themselves."

Largs and Millport Weekly News: Largs Community CouncilLargs Community Council (Image: Newsquest)

Jim Phillips said: "I really think that where there is a safety concern, North Ayrshire Council and other parties within it, are dragging their heels on this - it has to be a priority."

Cllr Tom Marshall said: "I got an email back from Transport Scotland saying that they had done a speeding survey and they reckoned the average speed was two or three hours over the speeding limit. My understanding for the 40mph limit is to do a safety audit. We will try and chase it again and see what they are going to do.

"An average speed camera between Largs and Skelmorlie would resolve the situation immediately. It has been going on for donkeys years."

Jim added: "But why have we been waiting for so long when it has been raised so many times in the past."

"The reason why it hasn't happened now is because there are no serious road accidents - that is the answer you always get."

The roads are regularly monitored by police, but Gerry told the News that this isn't enough of a deterrent, and more significant traffic calming measures were necessary such as average speed cameras.

A Transport Scotland spokesperson said: “Safety camera resources are regularly deployed on the A78 with three mobile camera sites with an evidenced collision and speeding profile south of Largs.

“An annual site prioritisation exercise is underway to assess the performance of all existing safety camera sites across Scotland and to identify locations which meet minimum criteria requirements.  If new locations are identified on the A78 which meet minimum criteria requirements then consideration will be given to deploying additional camera resources on the route.

“We would encourage people to report any cases of speeding to Police Scotland.”