Large boulders on Rest made safe but A83 remains closed

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Large boulders exposed in a steep channel above the A83 have been made safe after teams worked throughout the day to manoeuvre the large rocks into a safe location.

The car-sized boulders were dislodged following a combination of efforts from a helicopter to drop water onto the material around the boulder as well as using a high-pressured hydraulic ‘jack’ to force the boulder into a new, safer position further down the steep channel.

Due to the safety risk of those working below the boulders the clear-up operations on the OMR and safety assessment of the damage to the carriageway were temporarily halted until the boulders were made safe, and teams have now resumed operations and will continue to work until sunset.

The A83 and Old Military Road (OMR) remain closed and a diversion route in place via the A83, A82, A85 and A819.  Western Ferries have increased their sailings on their Gourock to Dunoon route to accommodate motorists.

Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said: ‘We’re pleased that the boulders that were identified by our geotechnical specialists have now been made safe after a huge effort to clear them in a controlled manner from the steep slope above the A83.

‘We’re now continuing to press on with operations on the OMR with what remaining daylight there is left.

‘Until the clear-up work is complete and a full safety assessment for any damage to the road is complete we cannot open the OMR or A83, therefore they have to remain closed overnight.

‘In the meantime, Argyll remains open for business and we have additional teams patrolling the diversion route to check for any issues and to help keep traffic moving.  Western Ferries are continuing to offer additional sailing to help accommodate motorists.

‘We thank the local community and motorists for their continued patience as we continue to do all we can to address the landslip at the Rest.’

Real time journey information is available from Traffic Scotland on www.trafficscotland.org, twitter at @trafficscotland or the mobile app my.trafficscotland.org