Essential work gives Soroba the jitters

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Worry over Covid is bearing down hard on everyone so it is not surprising Soroba residents have the jitters about workmen allegedly travelling from a Tier 4 area to carry out improvements to water pipes running under their estate.

Top those concerns with the headache of roads being dug up, then the hassle of not being able to park in their usual spot, residents are understandably fed-up Scottish Water has decided to go ahead now – mid pandemic – with Phase One of a massive project that could last six months.

Despite pleas for the work to be delayed again until the virus eases, the project deemed ‘essential’ is continuing.

The question is: How essential is essential?

After The Oban Times contacted Scottish Water, assurances were given that measures, where required, were in place to ensure safe working and allow for safe distancing by its workforce as well as keeping the community safe.

But according to people on the estate and those representing them, this is still not the right time to carry out the work saying residents have enough to worry about. Poignantly, it was pointed out the estate is already heavy-hearted at losing one of its own – stalwart community volunteer Jessie Scott – to the virus.

With coronavirus looming large and Christmas at its heels, couldn’t Scottish Water have given Soroba a break at least until the New Year – or brought in workers from similar or lower tier levels to Oban?