Forestry Commission Scotland presses on with long term programme to protect A82

Efforts to make safe an unstable cliff face above the A82 near Invermoriston will require that the A82 (between Invermoriston and Drumnadrochit) remains closed this weekend.
 
Geo-technical teams from Forestry Commission Scotland’s Steep Ground Harvesting Programme are continuing to grapple with the demands of challenging terrain in a bid to complete the work as quickly – and safely – as possible.
 
Alex McLeod, who is managing the Commission’s long-term Steep Ground Harvesting programme along the A82 said;
 
“I have to thank our colleagues in BEAR Scotland and Police Scotland for the way in which they responded to this particular incident.
 
“Together with Geo-rope, our technical advisors, we are co-ordinating efforts to clear debris, assess and make safe the hillside and we will continue to work with our colleagues in Bear Scotland and Police Scotland to complete the necessary work as quickly as possible.”
 
Iain McDonald, BEAR Scotland’s North West Unit Network Manager, said:
 
“We continue to work with Forestry Commission Scotland to enable the A82 to be reopened following the rock fall yesterday and although the road is now clear of debris, there are still concerns about the slope.
 
“Public safety remains the ultimate concern and we are therefore advising that the A82 remains closed as operations progress.”
 
Initial indications are that an old oak tree fell on to a boulder field and triggered the rock fall. However, the Commission’s team will continue to investigate the cause as they further develop plans to stabilise the slope.
 
Indications are that the work required will be technically challenging and a major undertaking – possibly requiring the use of a helicopter to airlift materials and equipment to the site.
 
Two rocks (approx. six tonnes each) need to be broken up and removed before catch fencing is then installed.
 
Alex added;
 
“We are looking into what underlying causes may be behind this incident but it illustrates once again the urgency behind our long-term programme.
 
“Felling the mature trees along the A82 and cleaning and scaling the rock face will significantly reduce the likelihood of these types of incidents in the future.
 
“We’d like to thank all local residents and road users for their continued patience and understanding.”
 
The section of hillside affected has not yet been tackled by the Commission’s Steep Ground Harvesting team but work was scheduled to begin in September this year.
 
Up to date information on traffic management measures will be available from Traffic Scotland as and when they are required.
 

Notes to editors

  1. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government's Environment and Forestry Directorate.
  2. Tha FCS pàirt de Bhuidheann-Stiùiridh Àrainneachd is Coilltearachd aig Riaghaltas na h-Alba; a' riaghladh nan 660,000 heactairean ann an Oighreachd na Coille Nàiseanta, a' dìon, a' cumail smachd air, agus a' leudachadh choilltean gus buannachdan a choileanadh dha coimhearsnachdan, dhan eaconamaidh agus ag obair an aghaidh atharrachadh sa ghnàth-shìde.
  3. Media enquiries to Paul Munro, Forestry Commission Scotland press office, 0300 067 6507 / 07785 527590 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.