COPS have launched a dedicated police unit as part of a major operation to cut the death and accident toll on Glasgow's roads.

Elderly pedestrians and dodgy motorists are the target of a new drive, which was launched this week, after a spate of horror road crashes.

As part of the action plan, high-visibility patrols will be monitoring a number of busy city centre junctions.

The dedicated unit has been set up by Chief Inspector Mark Sutherland, with officers focusing on accident blackspots, including Queen Street and Argyle Street.

Six officers will be involved in the campaign and the sites of recent fatal crashes will be getting extra police attention.

Since April, two elderly pedestrians have been killed in road traffic accidents and another pensioner was left with horrific injuries.

Both incidents - which took place in the city centre - involved buses.

Senior officers believe that having a unit which focuses primarily on road safety is the key to driving down the number of incidents.

CI Sutherland, area commander for the city centre, said: "We are determined to make the roads safer for everyone within Glasgow city centre with a real focus on vulnerable road users.

"We will have additional resources committed to the campaign with our objective to make a lasting impact on road safety.

"My officers have been out across the city and we will be continuing this commitment as we seek to educate drivers and pedestrians.

"We will be speaking to vulnerable road users at pedestrian crossings to reinforce safety messages.

"While, on the other hand, enforcing road traffic legislation when it is appropriate to do so."

The creation of the unit comes as Police Scotland launched a nationwide safety campaign, targeting cyclists, the elderly and school pupils.

In May, an elderly couple were involved in a horrific bus crash during a trip to Glasgow.

Brian Rose, 76, died in hospital almost a month after tragedy.

His 72-year-old wife Barbara, who was also trapped under the bus in Queen Street, has also been transferred to a hospital in England.

As revealed by the Evening Times, the couple lost limbs after the road crash, which happened while they were visiting Glasgow on a coach trip break.

The pair, from Newcastle, had been enjoying a pensioners' bus holiday when tragedy struck on Friday May 29.

More than three months later an 80-year-old man was crossing Argyle Street at the junction with Jamaica Street when he was struck by the vehicle.

The incident happened at around 7.10pm on Saturday August 1.

He was rushed to Glasgow Royal Infirmary with a head injury and died a week later.

Extra police will be deployed to both accident sites as part of the campaign.

Glasgow city centre was also the scene of the bin lorry tragedy last Christmas.

Six people died when the vehicle lost control in Queen Street and George Square on December 22 last year and mounted the pavement before crashing into the side of the Millennium Hotel.

As well as preventing accidents, senior officers say that educating the public about their safety will be a key part of the initiative.

CI Sutherland added: "Since the beginning of April two separate incidents at pedestrian crossings have resulted in the sad loss of two lives with another seriously injured.

"Those who were killed and injured were all elderly pedestrians

"Along with Superintendent Alan Murray, who leads on Road Policing in the Division, we have been looking closely at these incidents to try and prevent recurrence.

"While working with our partners across Glasgow, including Glasgow City Council's road department, it is clear that both drivers and pedestrians need to be more diligent."