Nearly 250 cyclists claim to have had accidents caused by Edinburgh's tram tracks leading to calls for segregated lanes if a planned extension goes ahead.

Read more: Edinburgh to get new cycle lanes for tram crossings​

Problems started three years before trams even ran with tracks laid as far back as 2011 listed in the latest summary of such incidents along the nine-mile budget-busting tram line.

Documents released by Edinburgh City Council under Freedom of Information legislation showed 248 incidents up until last year.


The statistics for last year also include the death of Zhi Min Soh, an Edinburgh University medical student who was killed in a collision with a minibus after her wheel reportedly became caught in tram tracks on Princes Street.

The papers also showed there had been in incident involving a cyclist and tram tracks in Princes Street day before, on May 30 last year.

Read more: Edinburgh to get new cycle lanes for tram crossings​

Concerns over injuries caused by tram tracks have led more than 150 cyclists to sue the council.

The council has introduced a raft of measures to improve safety including including segregated cycle lanes, red-screeded routeways and better aligned junctions.

Campaigners said the council action is "making the best of a bad job" and added that segregation should be the aim for the planned new £165m route to Newhaven.

Read more: Edinburgh to get new cycle lanes for tram crossings​

Dave Du Feu, of Spokes Lothian, said: "The safety of the tram related to the tram extension is going to be a big issue this year.

"What the council did last autumn was the easy bit where they didn't need to do much consultation, but another phase due to be implemented in the next month or so to do with advance stop lights and then another phase due to be implemented in the autumn which involve bit of physical work changing traffic islands.


"So they have this ongoing programme so they are kind of making the best of a bad job.

"It is not ideal but at least now they are doing all they can to rectify it as much as possible."

Read more: Edinburgh to get new cycle lanes for tram crossings​

The original design was not cyclist-friendly, he said. "For example that are quite a lot of stretches where there is a big reservation between the two tram lines and that means you are using up space that could have been used at the edge of the road for segregated cycle lanes."

Stewart White, a senior lawyer with Thompsons Solicitors which represents 152 cyclists who claim to have been injured on tram lines, said the figures "make clear that this is a well known and longstanding safety issue that the council have been slow to react to".

He said: "Of course as well as a huge amount of serious injuries we had last year’s tragic fatality.

"The legal cases I’m taking forward continue to make good progress and I’m confident that they will be successful not just for our clients but as a consequence will result in improved cycling provision on the relatively short section of road where cyclists and trams interact on Edinburgh’s streets.”

Read more: Edinburgh to get new cycle lanes for tram crossings​

Another measure expected to be completed in autumn 2018 is a short length of new segregated cycle lane on Princes Street.


A City of Edinburgh Council spokesman said: “Pedestrian and cyclist safety are of utmost importance to the Council. Like all UK and European cities with trams, we welcome all research that helps us improve cycle safety around tram tracks.

“We’re currently implementing four phases of measures to help raise awareness of how cyclists and drivers can keep each other safe around tram tracks, including road markings to guide cyclists along the safest routes and a communications campaign encouraging safe driving.

"As always, we urge all road users to adhere to the rules of the road when in the vicinity of tram tracks – especially rule 306 in the Highway Code, which advises cyclists to avoid crossing tram rails at a shallow angle.”