Page last updated at 11:54 GMT, Monday, 21 December 2009

Safety upgrade on landslip stretch of A83 in Argyll

A83 landslip/Pic: Kris Clark
Landslides have closed the road twice since 2007

Safety measures are to be introduced on a stretch of road in Argyll which has been closed two times in recent years by landslides.

Sensors will be installed along the A83 at the Rest and be Thankful to monitor the movement of the hillside.

Fencing will also be put in around the road, near Arrochar, to protect the carriageway from falling debris.

The £760,000 programme of works will begin in January and is due to be completed by the summer.

The first phase of work will see remote sensing equipment introduced to assist ongoing monitoring of movement of the hillside.

Wig wag sign
Flashing "wig wag" warning signs will be installed on the road

Debris flow fencing will also be installed to help reduce the risk of future landslide material reaching the roadside.

Further works will follow to replace an existing culvert, repair the embankment and resurface the road. These are expected to start by March and last approximately eight weeks.

New "wig wag" signs will also be installed as part of a two-year pilot to test their efficiency as a warning system for drivers.

Graham Edmond, Transport Scotland's head of network maintenance, said the work aimed to protect against future landslides.

"This is an area that has experienced landslides in recent years," he said.

"While we cannot prevent future events we are working closely with our operating company, Scotland Transerv, to deliver mitigation measures that enable us to keep the A83 open as safely as possible."

The A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful was closed for 48 hours in September after a landslide brought 1,000 tonnes of mud and rubble onto the road.

A similar landslide in October 2007 resulted in the road being closed for several weeks.

In both cases drivers faced a 45-mile diversion, adding as much as two hours to some journeys.

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