‘Debris barrier’ installed at A83 landslip weak spot

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A new barrier has been installed across a vulnerable channel on a  hillside above the A83 after landslips at the Rest and Be Thankful.

It has been built to prevent further movement of boulders and rubble which were destabilised following landslips in August and September.

In another protective measure for road users, ‘good progress’ is being made on the construction of a ‘temporary bund’ in the hope of keeping the Old Military Road (OMR) running.

BEAR Scotland said the first phase of the bund was expected to be completed by Christmas. The remaining phase, which will see the bund built up to its full height, is expected to be completed in early January.

Works is progressing on the larger bund.

Eventually, the bund will be 570 feet – 175 metres – long and will stand at least 6.5 feet – 2.2 metres – to provide extra protection for the OMR should the A83 have to close.

BEAR Scotland said together with the monitoring of the hillside and the 24/7 convoying of traffic along the OMR, it is hoped to keep the route moving through the festive period.

However, that will depend on weather forecasts and hillside saturation levels, with decisions on the use of the OMR being made daily, it said.

Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s north west representative, said: ‘The OMR continues to operate well as a local diversion route for road users while the A83 remains closed and we will continue to operate it throughout the festive period when conditions permit. It is pleasing to see the debris barrier in place on the hillside above the A83 and progress has also been made on the first phase of work to construct a temporary 175m long bund next to the OMR across the foot of the vulnerable channel.

‘As ever, we thank all road users for their patience while we do everything we can to address the ongoing situation at the Rest.’

Michael Matheson, cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, said: ‘This is really encouraging progress as we work hard to improve the resilience of the Old Military Road as a local diversion route and I thank the teams involved for their efforts.

‘The completion of this phase of work will make the local diversion more reliable, offering reassurance to road users. Alongside these measures, Transport Scotland is exploring future works for the hillside to bolster the resilience of this key corridor route.’

Road users are advised to check Traffic Scotland for up-to-date travel information.

The new debris barrier.