THEY spend their lives ferrying passengers around Oxford’s congested roads and now cabbies have revealed their top three traffic blackspots in the city.
Topping the list is the junction of Windmill Road and London Road in Headington, with taxi drivers calling for alterations to prevent any further accidents.
Over the past five years there have been three accidents resulting in serious injuries there and nine causing minor injuries.
The figures include an accident last month when two people were hurt when a Nissan Micra crashed into a lamp-post.
Nissar Mohammed, 44, a driver for Royal Cars, drew up the list based on 15 years’ experience driving in the city.
He said: “Windmill Road is one of the most dangerous crossings in Oxford. You have two tight junctions at either side in Windmill Road and Old High Street and they both go green at the same time.
“It causes chaos, because you have traffic going in four different directions at the same time and there’s big potential for an accident there. They should phase the lights, so only one is green at any one time and the other turns green afterwards.”
Mr Mohammed, who drives up to 40 hours a week, said he avoids the junction and uses Wharton Road or Lime Walk to avoid it.
Oxfordshire County Council is carrying out a £2m improvement scheme in London Road, including longer bus laybys in London Road, which the council believes will stop stationary buses blocking traffic at the junction. But there are no plans to alter the traffic lights.
The zebra crossing at the corner of New Road, Queen Street and Castle Street in the city centre and the Frideswide Square traffic lights, turning right to the railway station are cabbies’ other main bugbears.
Mr Mohammed is unhappy that a £15,500 zebra crossing replaced a puffin crossing outside County Hall, in New Road.
He said: “There are bus stops very near the crossing and if buses are parked, it makes it very difficult to see pedestrians. I have had three near-misses there and other drivers say it’s a bad junction too.”
The council said there had been no accidents at the new crossing and none in the five years prior to its installation.
Spokesman Owen Morton said: “The crossing and the raised hump makes drivers aware people are crossing, slows them down and makes the crossing safe.”
Alan Woodward, secretary of the Oxford Licensed Taxicab Association, said: “These are all valid points but most of them are being looked at by the council.”
The council is not considering making any changes to the traffic lights in Frideswide Square.
Plans for a £2m redesign of the square are on hold pending the results of a spending review.