DUST particles from material left behind by workers at the Dalry Bypass are causing health concerns for Highfield residents, says a local widower.

Anthony Gorman fears that a fine powdery cement, which was left over after mine shafts were filled in, could be a health hazard.

The 71-year-old, who suffers from a lung condition, said: “They had been filling in the mine shafts, which I understand they’ve got to do.

“It’s not the cement you use to build with, it’s a particular type of cement that’s very fine. They left it in a pile in April.

“The thing is, when these men were working with it, they were wearing masks to protect their faces.

“The whole area is covered in the cement dust. It’s blowing all over cars and houses, neighbours are losing plants because it’s blowing into gardens.

“I’ve heard neighbours saying they’re coughing more than normal. The house and the car getting covered in dust, that can be dealt with, but it’s a health issue – that’s the main concern.

“When you’re walking about you’re getting this cement dust in the atmosphere. If you’re putting washing out, it’s getting contaminated. The hedges are covered in it, the side of the pavements. I’ve got two buckets-full that I swept up. Everybody is fed up with the dust.

“You’re having to hose down the car every day. If you clean your windows, they’re covered in it again within a day or two. This is unacceptable.

“I’m in favour of the bypass, I think it will be good for Dalry, but this is wholly unacceptable.”

A spokesman for Transport Scotland said: “Work on the new A737 Dalry Bypass is progressing well and considerable effort is being made to mitigate any environmental impacts, where possible.

“As part of that mitigation, the contractor is committed to reducing the amount of dust created by the works.

“This includes water bowsers and the use of road sweepers throughout the site.

“On notification of local resident’s concerns about dust, the contractor has ensured that any stockpiles of fine material have been covered and would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused.”