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New North East Connections newsletter - out now!07 Sep 2018

New North East Connections newsletter out now

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New North East Connections newsletter - out now!07 Sep 2018

The latest issue of North East Connections is out!  In this issue you'll read all about the latest news from the North East Trunk Road Unit, including information about our recent surfacing projects and a catch-up with our landscaping team who have been hard at work over the summer months.  You can also read more about our involvement in a recent Roadworker Safety Campaign and hear from some of the Graduates we've had working with our teams during the summer.

Click here to read an online copy or download a copy via the link below.

To stay up to date with the latest news from the North East Unit follow us on twitter: @NETrunkRoads

 

downloadBEAR Scotland - North East Connections - Stakeholder Newsletter_September 2018.pdf

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Public Information Exhibition launched on proposals for walking and cycling improvements on the A82 in Inverness24 Aug 2018

Public Information Exhibition launched on proposals for walking and cycling improvements on the A82 in Inverness

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Public Information Exhibition launched on proposals for walking and cycling improvements on the A82 in Inverness24 Aug 2018

A82 Longman Roundabout and Tomnahurich Swing Bridge Study

 

Plans for improved walking and cycling facilities on the A82 between Longman Roundabout and Tomnahurich Swing Bridge have been developed to improve road safety and support active travel in Inverness.

We are looking for feedback from the public on proposals which include  a new footway/cycleway between Longman Roundabout and Telford Road Roundabout. This will improve facilities for residents and visitors who are walking and cycling through this part of the city. 

Further proposals include widening the pavements and additional island refuges in the middle of the road at key crossing locations along the route.  These will reduce the length of time it takes to cross as well as making the crossings, and those using them, more visible to drivers.  We are also proposing a potential signalised crossing on the A82 at Smith Avenue as well as providing additional signalised crossings at the existing Tomnahurich Street/Kenneth Street junction signaals. 

To view the proposals, please click on the link at the bottom of this page.

BEAR Scotland are welcoming feedback on the proposals.  

Commenting on the proposals, Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said: “Improvement measures are being drawn up to improve both the facilities for those crossing the A82 between Longman Roundabout and Tomnahurich Swing Bridge and also for those walking adjacent to the A82 at this location.  These measures will contribute to improved pedestrian safety in the city.

“We are inviting the public to comment on these proposals by emailing us on NWConsultation@bearscotland.co.uk by Friday 21 September.

“We’ll then review all feedback from the community and others with Transport Scotland before any final decisions are made.

“All comments are welcome and we’ll share any outcomes with all relevant stakeholders once available.”

All comments on the proposals can be emailed to BEAR Scotland on NWConsultation@bearscotland.co.uk by Friday 21 September.  

Click the link below to view the proposals.

 

downloadBEAR Scotland - A82 Inverness - Proposals for Walking and Cycling Improvements.pdf

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Temporary traffic lights on A9 south of Helmsdale due to embankment failure23 Aug 2018

Temporary traffic lights on A9 south of Helmsdale due to embankment failure

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Temporary traffic lights on A9 south of Helmsdale due to embankment failure23 Aug 2018

Temporary traffic lights have been erected on the A9 south of Helmsdale after a small section of embankment next to the A9 has washed into the field below.

The embankment is located next to the southbound A9 at Westgarty, around three miles south of Helmsdale, and runs into the field below and away from the road.  

Geotechnical engineers have assessed the site and extent of the embankment failure, and the temporary traffic lights have been installed for safety to help keep motorists away from the edge of the carriageway.

Teams are now working to design a repair for the embankment.  

Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said: “We’ve installed the temporary traffic lights as a precaution to help ensure motorists are safe on the A9.  

“We’re now working to design a repair for the embankment which will allow teams to reopen the road to both lanes.

“We’ll work to keep all stakeholders updated as to the progress of these repairs.

“In the meantime the temporary traffic lights will remain in place for safety and we’ll continue to monitor the area.”

Real-time journey information is available from Traffic Scotland on www.trafficscotland.org, twitter @trraffiscotland or the new mobile site, my.trafficscotland.org.  

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Ongoing programme of surfacing repairs to see £24M invested in North West Trunk Road Network13 Jul 2018

Ongoing programme of surfacing repairs to see £24M invested in North West Trunk Road Network

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Ongoing programme of surfacing repairs to see £24M invested in North West Trunk Road Network13 Jul 2018

A major surfacing repair programme will see over £24M invested by Transport Scotland at over 200 locations across the North West Trunk Road network before January 2019.

 

Numerous sections of the North West network, which is around 883 miles long and includes over 2,400 bridges and structures, suffered accelerated surface deterioration following the harsh winter weather conditions at the start of this year.

An intensive programme of road surfacing has been ongoing across the north west network to repair the damaged road surface since the start of 2018, with approximately £24M in total set to be invested into surfacing works between January and December this year.

Click here for an interactive map of the planned road improvement locations for trunk roads in the north west of Scotland.  

These areas of accelerated deterioration formed following the break-up of the road surface through the repeated freeze/thaw action last winter where heavy rain was frequently followed by sub-zero temperatures.  Rainwater penetrates through the road make-up via tiny cracks in the material, then, as temperatures drop expands as it turns to ice which results in bigger cracks and a weakened road structure. Ultimately this leads to potholes and break up of the road surface.

Click here for more information about how the road defects form following the freeze and thaw cycle.

Details of the projects planned for the remainder of 2018, including location, programmed dates, timing and traffic management are included in our surfacing programme which you can download via the link at the bottom of the page. 

In addition to this published programme, specific stakeholder consultation will be undertaken for those scheme which, to ensure the safety of the workforce and road users alike, require road closures and diversions, as we appreciate that these can have a significant local impact. Our teams strive to carry out surfacing repairs as quickly as possible to minimise this disruption.

All sections of the network will continue to be regularly inspected and localised repairs will be undertaken as required.

BEAR Scotland and Transport Scotland wish to thank the local communities in advance for their patience during these essential works. 

Programme revisions and regular updates will be posted weekly on this page. If you require any further information or would like to comment on any of the proposed works outlined in the programme please do not hesitate to contact us by email at NWConsultation@bearscotland.co.uk.

Should you wish to report a specific trunk road defect you can do so via Transport Scotland’s Freephone Customer Care number, 0800 028 1414 or through BEAR Scotland’s online report a defect portal.

Real time journey information is available from traffic Scotland on www.trafficscotland.org, the new mobile site my.trafficscotland.org, or twitter @trafficscotland.

 

Click here for an interactive map of the planned road improvement locations for trunk roads in the north west of Scotland , or click the link below to download a copy of the North West 2018 Surfacing programme.

 

downloadBEAR Scotland North West Programme of Planned Road Improvements 2018 21.09.2018.pdf

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North West Connections - Summer 2018 - issue available now!09 Jul 2018

North West Connections - Summer 2018 - issue available now!

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North West Connections - Summer 2018 - issue available now!09 Jul 2018

Welcome to the summer issue of North West Connections - the latest BEAR Scotland newsletter from the North West trunk road network.

In this issue you'll find updates about our latest projects, read more about the busy winter season and hear from our roads teams about the huge ongoing programme of surfacing repairs across the north west unit.  

To read a copy click here or download a copy through the link below. 

To stay up to date with the latest news from from the North West Unit follow our twitter page: @NWTrunkRoads

downloadBEAR Scotland - North West Connections - Stakeholder Newsletter_Summer 2018.pdf

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New campaign launched to highlight abuse and dangerous driving and its impact on road workers in Scotland04 Jun 2018

New campaign launched to highlight abuse and dangerous driving and its impact on road workers in Scotland

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New campaign launched to highlight abuse and dangerous driving and its impact on road workers in Scotland04 Jun 2018

 

More than 85% of road workers in north of Scotland have experienced dangerous driver behaviour when working on the trunk road network

 

Survey reveals instances of bottles, rubbish, foam bullets and bottles of urine thrown at workforce by passing road users.

 

Over 85% of trunk road workers across the north of Scotland had their lives put at risk by motorists’ dangerous driving behaviour or are subjected to verbal or physical abuse, a new survey has revealed. 

Trunk Road Operating Company BEAR Scotland, along with Scotland TranServ and AMEY in the south of Scotland, are launching a road worker safety campaign in conjunction with Transport Scotland to speak up for road workers in Scotland. 

The campaign has been created to highlight the unsafe, reckless and anti-social behaviour of some road users which is putting workers lives at risk, as well as the abuse that the teams experience from passing motorists – often on a daily basis.  

It comes on the back of a survey among employees into the levels of unsafe driver behaviour and abuse that teams have experienced in the past year.  BEAR Scotland, who manage and maintain trunk roads in the north of Scotland, carried out a survey of their own teams.

The BEAR Scotland survey includes reports of: 

 

Drivers ignoring red lights and temporary traffic signals at road works – A vast majority (86%) of those surveyed have experienced road users ignoring red lights.

Drivers entering coned-off works – Over 73% of respondents have experienced  motorists entering the works safe-zone area in the past year.

Verbal abuse from motorists – Three-quarters (75%) of employees have received verbal abuse from passing motorists in the past year.

Missiles thrown towards workforce – Nearly one out of three road workers experienced missiles being thrown towards them in the past year by passing motorists.   This included bottles of juice, coffee cups, eggs, foam bullets, food wrappers and banana skins – as well as reports of bottles of urine and even a dirty nappy being thrown.

Threats and intimidation – a number of instances were reported of threatening behaviour being made to road workers manning road closure points.

 

Scotland’s Trunk Road Operating Companies are calling on road users to be patient and respect the work force who are carrying out essential road maintenance.  Throughout the two-week campaign BEAR Scotland, as well as Amey and Transerv in the south of Scotland, will look to highlight some of the statistics and real-life accounts and experiences from their teams in partnership with Transport Scotland. 

Eddie Ross, on behalf of BEAR Scotland covering the North West of Scotland said: 

“We understand that no one likes being held up at roadworks and we try hard to minimise disruption as much as possible. However, the behaviour of a small minority of passing drivers is unacceptable.  Ironically, our team during the winter are, quite rightly, considered to be winter heroes for keeping roads safe during snow conditions. At other times, when they are trying to keep roads safe by repairing them, they are subjected to abuse.”

Andy Thompson, BEAR Scotland’s representative for the North East of Scotland said:

“We rely on our employees to keep our motorways and other trunk roads safe every day. From repairing potholes to cutting grass, replacing lighting to attending incidents.  There is no place for verbal or physical abuse, jumping red lights or speeding through roadworks past workers undertaking essential tasks.  Everyone is entitled to respect at work, no matter where their place of work is.”

Dale Barron, a Senior Operative (Chargehand) in the North East Unit, has been working on trunk roads every day for the past ten years.

“We frequently see people not paying attention and ignoring the advanced warning signs on approach to our sites.  The worst incident that has happened to me was last year on the A90 when I was in a stationary piece of machinery within the safe work zone.   A lorry entered the works area and shunted the side of my vehicle, breaking off the mirror and throwing it forwards, then – remarkably – kept on driving.  Thankfully no one was injured.  If one of the guys had been walking past the digger when the lorry came into the site, he would have been hit.   That sort of thing doesn’t leave you, it’s in the back of my mind every time I’m out on site.”

Calum Farquharson is a Graduate Engineer for BEAR Scotland, working in the North West Unit.  He described his experiences as part of the campaign.

“We get people shouting things, swearing at us, blasting their horns, hand gestures…you end up just getting used to it.   

“People jump red lights every single time I’m out on site. I’ve seen drivers accelerate to the lights when they see them switch to amber, speeding past a 30mph sign first, then past a 10mph sign, then straight through the red light.  So frequently you’ll get drivers entering the 10mph works area at over 50mph because they’re accelerating to try and catch up.  Once one of our operatives was moving a cone within the work zone and he had to throw himself onto the verge to miss a speeding driver who had jumped the light – all so the driver could avoid waiting five minutes.”

BEAR Scotland is calling on motorists to respect their workforce. 

Look out for the campaign hashtag on social media - #RoadworkerSafety – to help spread the word in June.

 

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