BEAR Scotland News RSS Feed

Landslip mitigation measures successfully prevent 300-tonne landslip reaching roadside at Glen Kinglas12 Dec 2019


Read more

Landslip mitigation measures successfully prevent 300-tonne landslip reaching roadside at Glen Kinglas12 Dec 2019


Innovative landslip mitigation measures installed next to the A83 near Glen Kinglas have been successful in preventing a 300-tonne landslide from reaching the roadside.

The landslip was blocked from reaching the carriageway thanks to specially designed rock-bunds, which were the result of an innovative, sustainable engineering solution using excavated rock during the construction of further landslip mitigation measures at the Rest and Be Thankful catch-pit project just three miles away on the A83.  

The landslip occurred around 230m above the carriageway following a period of heavy rainfall near midnight on Saturday night at Glen Kinglas, where teams from BEAR Scotland had been on high-alert during the Met Office yellow weather warning. 

Engineers estimate that the rock bunds helped prevent the A83 from being closed by up to two days as a result of the landslip, successfully avoiding disruption to road users.

Geotechnical engineers have assessed the landslip along with teams from BEAR Scotland for safety with plans now underway to remove the debris from behind the bund.  Short-term lane closures will be in place while teams mobilise plant and heavy machinery to remove the material from the bund.

The rock-bunds form a barrier on the hillside parallel to the A83, and mean that material from a potential landslip is held behind the rock barrier. The 28,000 tonnes of rock used to create them was sustainably re-used during excavations of the nearby £2.24M catch-pit project at the Rest and be Thankful, where three large ‘pits’ were created to help provide further resilience against potential landslips in the area.  The excavated rock was transported three miles to Glen Kinglas and used to construct the bunds, providing a considerable reduction in carbon emissions with teams saving an estimated 50,000 lorry miles – roughly the same distance as travelling around the world twice – due to the huge reduction in haulage distance for the excavated rock.

Heavy rain throughout the week has meant BEAR Scotland teams have been on high-alert and responding to various incidences of fallen trees and localised flooding on the north west trunk road network since the weekend.

Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said:  “The bunds at Glen Kinglas have performed as designed and have been successful in preventing around 300-tonnes of landslip material from over 200m above the road reaching the carriageway and causing the road to be closed to road users.

“We’re pleased that this innovative and sustainable method of landslip resilience has been effective, demonstrating that this engineering design and extensive studies of the geotechnical landscape in the area have been a success.  

“Our teams have been working hard to respond to various incidences of fallen trees and reports of localised flooding on some sections of the network throughout the past few days, and we’re now turning towards the debris removal operation at Glen Kinglas.  This will involve some short periods of traffic management while machinery is mobilised to remove the debris from behind the bunds, and we thank all road users for their patience while this is completed.”

Real-time journey information is available from Traffic Scotland on, twitter at @trafficscotland or the new mobile site

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

Consultation launched ahead of plans to carry out £150,000 overnight surfacing improvements in Oban04 Oct 2019

Consultation launched ahead of plans to carry out £150,000 overnight surfacing improvements in Oban

Read more

Consultation launched ahead of plans to carry out £150,000 overnight surfacing improvements in Oban04 Oct 2019

Project provisionally planned for two weeks from Sunday 3 November, 8pm-6am


A public consultation has been launched ahead of a project to upgrade a stretch of George Street in Oban which is provisionally planned to get underway in November.

The £150,000 project will see the 340m stretch of carriageway resurfaced to create a smoother and safer journey for road users, along with various iron-covers replaced to reduce any noise from passing vehicles.   

The project is provisionally programmed for construction overnight between Sunday 3 November to Friday 15 November, between 8pm and 6am each night.  Teams also intend to carry out improvements from 9.30pm on Tuesday 5 November to minimise disruption for attendees during Bonfire Night festivities.  No works will be carried out overnight on Friday 8 November or Saturday 9 November to avoid impacting on road users during the busy weekend period.

Due to the busy nature of this section of the road and the network restrictions through Oban, the project has to take place overnight.  While the traffic management details have yet to be finalised, the A85 is expected to remain open throughout the project with a convoy system in place to protect roadworkers as well as motorists during the improvements.  During the project there will be various access restrictions to side streets that adjoin George Street. There will also be parking restrictions in place throughout the work along George Street and Corran Esplanade. Exact details of these restrictions will be published nearer the time once the programme has been finalised.

Efforts will be made to ensure any noise is kept to a minimum throughout the project, with the nosiest operations (such as removing the worn-out road surface) taking place before 11pm each night.  

BEAR Scotland has reached out to local businesses, residents and other key stakeholders to inform them of the project and to invite their feedback on the proposals.  All feedback will be considered along with Transport Scotland before any final decision is made.  

Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said: “We’ve launched a consultation ahead of plans to upgrade the road surface on the A85 at George Street and we’re inviting stakeholders to give us their thoughts before we commit to any final programme.

“The road surfacing project is essential to upgrade the carriageway, however we want to assure residents and business owners that we will be doing everything possible to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum during this project.  

“Our proposals have been planned to take place out with the busier summer months and before the cold winter weather sets in, however we’re also avoiding the busier Friday and Saturday nights and will start improvements later in the evening on Bonfire Night to avoid impacting road users.

“Once a final programme has been confirmed we’ll reach out to stakeholders again to inform them of the final details.”

Feedback on the proposed £150,000 improvement project for the A85 George Street in Oban can be shared via email to by 5pm on Friday 11 October.  

Real-time journey planning information can be obtained by visiting, twitter at @trafficscotland or the new mobile site  

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

A82 Inverness Walking & Cycling Improvements05 Jul 2019

A82 Inverness Walking and Cycling Improvements - Tomnahurich Roundabout to Longman Road

Read more

A82 Inverness Walking & Cycling Improvements05 Jul 2019

A82 Inverness Walking and Cycling Improvements

Transport Scotland and BEAR Scotland are developing plans to improve road safety for pedestrians, cyclists and other non-motorised users on the A82 between the Longman Road Roundabout and the Tomnahurich Roundabout.

The A82 passes through central Inverness and is a busy urban environment with the result that many pedestrians and cyclists are required to cross this often busy road. The primary intention of these proposals is to improve road safety and reduce the risk of collisions involving vulnerable road users. It is also anticipated that by improving facilities for pedestrians and cyclists this will help to encourage greater active travel which is a key priority for Transport Scotland.   

As a trunk road, the A82 forms a strategic link through Inverness, conveying over 30,000 vehicles per day. Trunk roads allow the efficient and effective movement of people and freight throughout Scotland, therefore supporting local and national economic growth. Transport Scotland aims to deliver improvements which improve facilities for non-motorised users such as walkers and cyclists, whilst still retaining the movement function of the trunk road. The successful delivery of future improvements will ultimately depend upon collaborative working with all key stakeholders.

As part of the ongoing process of involving the local community in these proposals, a public exhibition event was held in Inverness at the Cameron Youth Centre in August last year. This event allowed the local community to consider the outline proposals and input into the design process.  Over 100 people attended throughout the day, with many more responses submitted after the event. Those who attended included local members of the public, elected representatives, staff from local employers and members of cycling and walking groups.

The valuable input from local stakeholders has been fully reviewed, analysed and considered. This has been very useful in the further development of the project and, where possible, the designs have evolved to take account of the comments and suggestions received. The project contains elements which can be implemented in the short term, whilst others require more comprehensive planning and design to ensure that the optimum solution is constructed. Transport Scotland will also prioritise any improvements which target locations with a history of pedestrian and cyclist collisions.

An outline programme of improvements that align with Transport Scotland’s Strategic Road Safety Plan have been developed to improve road safety along this route and encourage safer active travel. To assist with keeping members of the public and interested stakeholders up to date with the proposals as they develop, BEAR Scotland will produce a newsletter every two months showing the latest progress on scheme development. To view the latest copy of the newsletter click the link below.

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


downloadBEAR Scotland_A82 Tomnahurich Road Safety Improvements_Issue 5 Newsletter (March).pdf

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

North West Connections June 2019 Newsletter28 Jun 2019

North West Connections - June 2019

Read more

North West Connections June 2019 Newsletter28 Jun 2019

The latest issue of the North West Connections newsletter is out! In this issue you'll read all about the latest news from the North West Trunk Road Unit, including information about our latest projects service and an overview of some of the community involvement so far this year.

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

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

downloadNorth West Connections_BEAR Scotland Stakeholder Newsletter_June 2019.pdf

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

Roadworker Survey Reveals Ongoing Abuse and Dangerous Driving Around Road Works24 Jun 2019


70% of Scotland’s trunk roadworkers have experienced dangerous driver behaviour 

Half of roadworkers have experienced a ‘near miss’ when vehicles mistakenly enter a works area

One in three reported dodging missiles including litter and even bottles of urine

In the last year 70% of trunk roadworkers across Scotland have had their lives put at risk by motorists’ dangerous driving behaviour or have been subjected to verbal or physical abuse while they carry out essential maintenance and improvement works on the country’s key routes, a new survey has revealed. 

Scotland’s three Trunk Road Operating Companies are now calling on road users to be patient and respect the work force who carry out essential road maintenance.  

The Roadworkers Safety survey has been undertaken by Trunk Road Operating Companies BEAR Scotland, Scotland TranServ and Amey as part of a campaign in conjunction with Transport Scotland to speak up for roadworkers in Scotland.

Throughout the week-long campaign (24 June – 28 July), each Operating Company will highlight the statistics and real-life accounts and experiences from their teams.  

The key findings of the 2019 Roadworker Safety survey taken from across almost 400 industry employees include:

70% of those surveyed reported instances of private vehicles entering the works safe-zone area. 

69% of those surveyed witnessed road users ignoring red lights at road works.

Nearly two out of three (65%) reported being verbally abused by passing motorists. 

52% had a near-miss – i.e. they narrowly avoided being hit by a private vehicle erroneously entering a works area.

Almost one in three roadworkers (31%) had missiles thrown at them in the past year by passing motorists - including plastic bottles, apple cores, eggs, juice cans and even bottles of urine.

14% experienced physical abuse whilst carrying out works on some of Scotland’s busiest routes. 

To try to counter these negative driver behaviours, CCTV body cameras have been deployed at some road work sites with additional signs installed at some locations to try and address the abuse and unsafe behaviour.  

BEAR Scotland is responsible for managing and maintaining trunk roads in the North East and North West of Scotland. 

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

“We understand that no one likes to be held up, however the behaviour of a small minority of road users is completely unacceptable. No one should have to experience unsafe or reckless behaviour in their workplace.  It is extremely disappointing to see the level of abuse and negative driver behaviour our teams have faced in the past year when they are doing their job in carrying out essential works to keep the trunk roads running safely.”

Scotland TranServ covers trunk roads in the South West of Scotland. Andy Fraser, Scotland TranServ’s Operating Company Representative said:

“More than two-thirds of our employees work on the trunk roads in the south west of Scotland every day. Their accounts of dangerous driving and the missiles thrown at them are concerning. While it is the minority of drivers who are responsible for such behaviour, it should not be tolerated in any shape or form on our trunk roads or elsewhere in our society. Our operatives are real people, with real lives and real families; families who want their dad, their husband and their son to come home safely at the end of the working day.”

Tom Wallace, Amey Account Manager for the Scottish South-East network, said:

“Amey research in 2018 demonstrated that 61% of Scottish drivers appear to be wilfully ignoring road safety measures and driving recklessly through roadworks; even though the majority of them (89%) admit that being a road worker is a hazardous occupation. 77% admitted to regularly exceeding speed limits through road works. The travelling public would not want their own family put in harm’s way, and yet road workers also have families, loved ones and others who care for them; whose lives would be devastated if they were killed or injured simply doing their job.”

RAC Road Safety Spokesman Simon Williams said: 

“Those working to fix and improve our roads deserve our respect rather than the shocking abuse many are often subjected to. Anyone who abuses road workers, either physically or verbally, should be reported to the police. We urge motorists who witness this kind of behaviour from others to remember the number plate of the offending vehicle and then to get in contact with the police.”  

Sandy Allan, Road Safety Manager for RoSPA in Scotland, said:

“Respecting the safety of those working close to ‘live traffic’ is essential. Everyone is entitled to feel and be safe on our roads and especially individuals who are more exposed than those driving. Essential works undertaken on our roads benefit all, and these cannot always be achieved without limited disruption.”

IAM Roadsmart’s Policy & Research Director, Neil Greig added:

“Roadworks may be unpopular but they are absolutely vital to ensure that our roads are kept safe and fit for purpose.  Mutual respect on our roads is essential and this must extend to those working hard to improve and repair them so we can all enjoy smooth trouble free journeys in the future.  Incidents like these just add to delays and a little patience goes a long way in reducing stress for everyone using and working on our main routes.”

Richard Jones, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at IOSH, the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health, concluded: 

“These findings about dangerous driving and the abuse of road workers by motorists are still shocking and unacceptable, with more injuries reported in this year’s figures despite an overall decline.

“Road workers – like all of us – have the right to safe and healthy working conditions for their essential and difficult work and we urge all road-users to support them and this campaign.”

Look out for the campaign hashtag on social media - #RoadworkerSafety – to help spread the word from June 24 – July 1.

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

New Crossing in Corpach opened by Fort William Primary School Pupil10 May 2019


Read more

New Crossing in Corpach opened by Fort William Primary School Pupil10 May 2019


Six year old Katie MacSween was invited to open the new pedestrian crossing across the A830 - thanking BEAR Scotland for ‘fixing the road and making it safe for her’ 


A six-year-old primary school pupil from Fort William had the honour of cutting the ribbon to officially open a new puffin crossing in Corpach today (10 May), after being invited by trunk road operator, BEAR Scotland, to mark the occasion. 

The honour comes after Katie MacSween, a pupil at Banavie Primary School, showed great interest in the works, which started earlier this year and saw the BEAR Scotland team install a new puffin crossing to improve pedestrian safety on the A830. 

Katie waved to the workforce each day on her way to and from school. When the project was nearing completion she handed pictures and thank you notes to those carrying out the work to express her gratitude ‘for fixing the road and making it safe for her’. The pictures and notes now take pride of place in the BEAR Scotland Corpach Depot.

The BEAR Scotland team tracked Katie down through her school to thank her for her kind words and to invite her to officially open the crossing.

Katie’s mum, Emma MacSween, said: “Katie decided she wanted to do something nice for the workmen working on the road outside the Corpach Co-operative store and so a few weeks ago she drew a whole load of pictures and wrote a letter on each one thanking them for fixing the road and making it safe for her. On her way to school one morning she handed these out to those doing the work.  

“Fast forward a few weeks and Katie was asked into her head teacher’s office and found out that the BEAR Scotland team had been trying to track her down so that they could thank her and, better still, invite her to officially open the new crossing. She was absolutely ecstatic!   It’s such a nice feeling to know your daughter has managed to brighten up people’s days!”

Katie herself said: “I really enjoyed watching the new crossing getting built and enjoyed cutting the ribbon today. I can’t wait to tell all my friends about it!” 

As well as getting a chance to cut the ribbon today to mark the opening, Katie also received a polar bear teddy from the BEAR Scotland team.

Duncan Crilley, Operations Supervisor at BEAR Scotland, said: “Our teams are so used to doing works every day that will benefit the local area but we rarely get individual and heartfelt thanks in the way Katie did. It really made everyone’s day to receive such a thoughtful package of thank you notes and pictures. We were delighted that she could join us to officially open the crossing today.” 

The new signalised puffin crossing which replaced the existing uncontrolled crossing point near the Co-operative, allowing pedestrians to safely cross the A830, is part of a wider £2 million investment programme by Transport Scotland in 2018/ 2019 aimed at removing barriers to accessibility across the Scottish trunk road network.

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts