A STOLEN car left hanging over railings after ploughing off Worcester's Lansdowne Crescent has re-ignited a row over the safety of the road.

The blue Ford Escort ended up nose-down in allotments after careering off a sharp right-hand bend.

Police confirmed the vehicle, discovered yesterday morning, had been reported stolen from outside a house in Northfield Street, Arboretum.

There was no sign of the driver or any passengers at the scene.

Residents have maintained for years that Lansdowne Crescent is a "rat-run" and a "death trap" and want to see traffic-calming measures in place.

Derek Hussell, of neighbouring Lansdowne Rise, claimed there had been two other accidents there since Christmas.

"The other two crashed into the railings and reversed back, but this one went straight over," said Mr Hussell, who wants the road closed.

"There are also regular bumps and shunts at the junction with Lansdowne Crescent Lane."

He claimed the Crescent was too narrow for two cars to pass, with vehicles mounting the pavement, and was also used as a racetrack at night.

Jim Mills, vice-chairman of Lansdowne Crescent Residents' Association, said "late-night racers" had been reported, and traffic-slowing measures were needed.

"We'd like to see some further white-lining in the Crescent before they get to that sharp right-bender," said Mr Mills, adding that Give Way markings at the junction of Lansdowne Crescent Lane had been successful.

"But our main concern is the speed of the traffic along the Crescent, and we've suggested some imaginative white-lining might be used to slow the traffic down."

City council senior engineer Tom Comerford said it was too early to make an assessment.

"We'll be talking to the police about the incident, then we'll consider if there's any action that the Highway Partnership needs to take."

Lansdowne Crescent was closed in April, 1996, following safety fears over a crumbling 19th Century retaining wall.

It was reopened in December, 1999, despite some residents lobbying for it to remain permanently closed. Others wanted the road to be made one-way. Nothing was decided and the road has remained open.

Witnesses to the latest incident should call 01905 723888, or Crimestoppers, on 0800 555111.