BEAR Scotland News RSS Feed

£1M Morar River Bridge Maintenance Project Complete20 Apr 2018

£1M MORAR RIVER BRIDGE MAINTENANCE PROJECT COMPLETE

Read more

£1M Morar River Bridge Maintenance Project Complete20 Apr 2018

 

Bridge painting project on A830 finished this week after six months of construction

 

A major bridge maintenance project worth over £1M on the A830 Morar River Bridge was finished this week.

Essential maintenance works had been taking place since November on the bridge that carries the A830 over the Morar River, and the project is now complete. 

The works involved removing the bridge’s existing paint system, which was in poor condition, and applying a new specialist protective paint system to all the elements of the bridge’s structural steel frame, helping to prevent rust and deterioration to the bridge.  

Teams had been working from scaffolding suspended beneath the bridge deck throughout the project.  The final phase of work involved dismantling these temporary structures that have provided safe access throughout the project, with the last of the scaffolding removed this week.

Commenting on the project, Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s North West Representative said: “We’re pleased that teams have completed the bridge maintenance project worth over £1M which began at the end of last year.

“The maintenance means that Morar River Bridge will be protected against the elements, meaning it’ll function safely for years to come.

“Teams have worked to remove the complex scaffolding which had been in use during the project, with the final section removed this week.

“We thank road users and local residents for their patience while we’ve worked to carry out this project on Morar River Bridge.”

Real time journey information is available from Traffic Scotland on www.trafficscotland.org or twitter @trafficscotland. 

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

Gangsta Granny Gritter set to hit the roads in Inverness29 Mar 2018

Gangsta Granny Gritter set to hit the roads in Inverness

Read more

Gangsta Granny Gritter set to hit the roads in Inverness29 Mar 2018

 

- ‘Local hero’ Kyle Mackay, eight, inspired by Walliams’ book character in choice of name for BEAR Scotland gritter

 

- Kyle visits BEAR Scotland Inverness depot to see his newly-named gritter up close

 

Kyle Mackay, the eight-year-old who was praised recently by Scotland’s Transport Minister Humza Yousaf for helping clear pavements of snow and ice in his home village of Kiltarlity, has unveiled a new name for one of BEAR Scotland’s winter vehicles on a visit to its Inverness depot today [Thursday 29 March].

Gangsta Granny Gritter was named by Kyle after a character from his favourite book, written by David Walliams. 

The gritter is one of BEAR Scotland’s 32-tonne, eight-wheeler vehicles – one of the largest in the UK. Kyle and members of the public will be able to track Gangsta Granny Gritter’s whereabouts via Traffic Scotland’s online Gritter Tracker as it helps clear trunk roads across Inverness and the North West of Scotland for years to come.

Kevin Campbell, BEAR Scotland Winter Manager for the North West of Scotland said: “We have been extremely impressed by Kyle’s initiative and determination to keep his home village safe during the recent bad weather. His community spirit is to his and his family’s credit. We were thrilled to offer him the opportunity to visit our depot and name one of our gritters.” 

Kyle’s mother, Allana Mackay, added: “Kyle was over the moon to have the chance to name one of BEAR Scotland’s winter gritters after his favourite character. We’re grateful to BEAR Scotland and Transport Scotland for the opportunity to do so and I know Kyle can’t wait to see it out on the road!”

BEAR Scotland is responsible for managing and maintaining the trunk roads in the north of Scotland on behalf of Transport Scotland. Other named gritters in BEAR’s winter fleet include ‘Mr. Plow’, ‘Gritallica’ and ‘Ready, Spready, Go!’.

 

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

North East Connections - March 2018 newsletter23 Mar 2018

North East Connections newsletter - March 2018

Read more

North East Connections - March 2018 newsletter23 Mar 2018

Welcome to our March 2018 newsletter!

Click this link or download a copy of the newsletter at the bottom of this page.

In this issue you can read more about our recent £200,000 footbridge installation on the A95 in Cromdale, learn more about our winter service and find out more about our recent work in the community.  

You can also stay up to date with all the latest news from the North East Unit by following us on twitter @NETrunkRoads.  

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

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

Freeze and Thaw Cycle: Tackling road defects in the North West of Scotland12 Feb 2018

Freeze and Thaw Cycle: Tackling road defects in the North West of Scotland

Read more

Freeze and Thaw Cycle: Tackling road defects in the North West of Scotland12 Feb 2018

BEAR Scotland is doing all it can to carry out repairs across trunk roads in the North West of Scotland after harsh weather conditions experienced earlier this year had a detrimental effect on sections of the network.

Now an ongoing £24M programme of surfacing improvements at over 200 locations across the North West is well underway. 

BEAR Scotland’s North West Planned Maintenance Manager explains the science behind the cause of this deterioration across the road surface and how BEAR teams are carrying out repairs.

 

A road pavement has a natural life cycle and at some point it will require maintenance, repair and replacement. While most of these repair and replacement projects can be planned, a road surface can fail prematurely. Such failure can happen over the course of months, or it can be very sudden.

Asphalt (“flexible”) road surfaces, such as those that make up most of the trunk roads BEAR manage, are known for their durability and resilience. Its strengths make it a highly used material for many road surfacing applications and is by far the preferred material for the vast majority of roads across the UK, and indeed Europe. Like all paved surfaces however, it is susceptible to deterioration due to the actions of nature. Despite the great longevity of a properly laid asphalt surface, even under heavy traffic, its life can be rapidly cut short simply by exposure to exceptional weather conditions. 

 

Freeze and Thaw Cycle

 

Over time, a road pavement will naturally deteriorate as the materials that make up the road become affected by temperature, rain (especially freezing following after heavy rain), sunlight and chemicals (such as diesel) that come into contact with the surface. 

The asphalt binder that is the “glue” of the road slowly begins to lose its flexibility under traffic and the actions above, tiny cracks form, reducing its natural resistance to water, allowing the water to penetrate into and underneath the road pavement. Once this happens, the surface can quickly fall prey to a number of different types of deterioration. 

Due to the expansion and contraction of water when it freezes and thaws, in freezing water expands in the voids within the carriageway’s matrix which can lead to tearing of the binder which holds the aggregate in the road together. This generally happens at surface level where the frost penetrates the upper layers. With the repeated expansion and contraction the stones in the road surface begin to loosen as their bond with the binder (the “glue”) is weakened. The more often this happens, the greater the rate of deterioration. This is a major contributory factor to formation of potholes.

In a section of road where surfacing materials are all of the same age and composition, locally accelerated deterioration can occur on a rapidly spreading basis as water penetrates not only from the running surface downwards, but also through the areas of looser stone which occur on the sides of a pothole as it forms and grows in size under the combined action of traffic and the elements.

This freeze/thaw action happened across the North West network at an extraordinary rate over the winter 17-18 period due to the range and frequency of temperature fluctuations above and below the freezing point. Between December 17 and March 18 alone this freeze/thaw cycle occurred on 58 days - the highest number recorded in the last five years.

On the A85 in Connel, one of the many areas very badly damaged by the weather earlier this year, road surface temperatures in December 17 ranged from a high of 10.3C to a low of minus 6.5C degrees which, when coupled with heavy rain in the same month, meant that the road surface had begun to break down in some places due to this flux in temperature and weather conditions.

 

Challenges

 

Fixing potholes in winter is difficult as snow, ice, water and moisture naturally collect in the holes and cracks. The existing pavement needs to be dry for most hot asphalt mixtures to form a solid, permanent bond. If any moisture remains in or near the pothole during the repair it can start the deterioration process all over again: freezing, expanding and allowing room for more precipitation to enter and expand further. When air temperatures have dropped to below minus 12Co as they did in January this year, it is a real challenge to repair road surfaces in winter conditions.

As a result, and due to the accelerated rate of pothole development in the last few months, the fallback solution used to overcome this has been to place a special temporary repair material into potholes to minimize the risk of them enlarging until a permanent repair or general resurfacing can be delivered when warmer and drier conditions prevail.

That’s the reason the spring and summer months are ideal for conducting road repairs wherever and whenever possible.  However, at the same time we have to consider the condition of the deteriorated road surface, the resources available to us and the impact our work has on road users and therefore we strive to plan our works to minimise disruption to local communities and the important tourist economy.  

 

What are BEAR doing to carry out road repairs?

 

BEAR are urging people to report potholes. This can usually be done through the BEAR website under the ‘report a defect’ function, or by calling Transport Scotland’s Freephone trunk road customer care line on 0800 028 1414.

Our teams are now well underway with a £24M programme of surfacing improvements at over 200 locations across the North West Unit before the end of this year, with teams working to minimise any disruption to road users wherever they can.  

For all up to date traffic information, visit Traffic Scotland at www.trafficscotland.org, their new mobile site at my.trafficscotland.org or on twitter @trafficscotland.

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

Freeze and Thaw Cycle: Tackling road defects in the North West of Scotland12 Feb 2018

Freeze and Thaw Cycle: Tackling road defects in the North West of Scotland

Read more

Freeze and Thaw Cycle: Tackling road defects in the North West of Scotland12 Feb 2018

BEAR Scotland is doing all it can to carry out repairs across trunk roads in the North West of Scotland after harsh weather conditions experienced earlier this year had a detrimental effect on sections of the network.

Now an ongoing £24M programme of surfacing improvements at over 200 locations across the North West is well underway. 

BEAR Scotland’s North West Planned Maintenance Manager explains the science behind the cause of this deterioration across the road surface and how BEAR teams are carrying out repairs.

 

A road pavement has a natural life cycle and at some point it will require maintenance, repair and replacement. While most of these repair and replacement projects can be planned, a road surface can fail prematurely. Such failure can happen over the course of months, or it can be very sudden.

Asphalt (“flexible”) road surfaces, such as those that make up most of the trunk roads BEAR manage, are known for their durability and resilience. Its strengths make it a highly used material for many road surfacing applications and is by far the preferred material for the vast majority of roads across the UK, and indeed Europe. Like all paved surfaces however, it is susceptible to deterioration due to the actions of nature. Despite the great longevity of a properly laid asphalt surface, even under heavy traffic, its life can be rapidly cut short simply by exposure to exceptional weather conditions. 

 

Freeze and Thaw Cycle

 

Over time, a road pavement will naturally deteriorate as the materials that make up the road become affected by temperature, rain (especially freezing following after heavy rain), sunlight and chemicals (such as diesel) that come into contact with the surface. 

The asphalt binder that is the “glue” of the road slowly begins to lose its flexibility under traffic and the actions above, tiny cracks form, reducing its natural resistance to water, allowing the water to penetrate into and underneath the road pavement. Once this happens, the surface can quickly fall prey to a number of different types of deterioration. 

Due to the expansion and contraction of water when it freezes and thaws, in freezing water expands in the voids within the carriageway’s matrix which can lead to tearing of the binder which holds the aggregate in the road together. This generally happens at surface level where the frost penetrates the upper layers. With the repeated expansion and contraction the stones in the road surface begin to loosen as their bond with the binder (the “glue”) is weakened. The more often this happens, the greater the rate of deterioration. This is a major contributory factor to formation of potholes.

In a section of road where surfacing materials are all of the same age and composition, locally accelerated deterioration can occur on a rapidly spreading basis as water penetrates not only from the running surface downwards, but also through the areas of looser stone which occur on the sides of a pothole as it forms and grows in size under the combined action of traffic and the elements.

This freeze/thaw action happened across the North West network at an extraordinary rate over the winter 17-18 period due to the range and frequency of temperature fluctuations above and below the freezing point. Between December 17 and March 18 alone this freeze/thaw cycle occurred on 58 days - the highest number recorded in the last five years.

On the A85 in Connel, one of the many areas very badly damaged by the weather earlier this year, road surface temperatures in December 17 ranged from a high of 10.3C to a low of minus 6.5C degrees which, when coupled with heavy rain in the same month, meant that the road surface had begun to break down in some places due to this flux in temperature and weather conditions.

 

Challenges

 

Fixing potholes in winter is difficult as snow, ice, water and moisture naturally collect in the holes and cracks. The existing pavement needs to be dry for most hot asphalt mixtures to form a solid, permanent bond. If any moisture remains in or near the pothole during the repair it can start the deterioration process all over again: freezing, expanding and allowing room for more precipitation to enter and expand further. When air temperatures have dropped to below minus 12Co as they did in January this year, it is a real challenge to repair road surfaces in winter conditions.

As a result, and due to the accelerated rate of pothole development in the last few months, the fallback solution used to overcome this has been to place a special temporary repair material into potholes to minimize the risk of them enlarging until a permanent repair or general resurfacing can be delivered when warmer and drier conditions prevail.

That’s the reason the spring and summer months are ideal for conducting road repairs wherever and whenever possible.  However, at the same time we have to consider the condition of the deteriorated road surface, the resources available to us and the impact our work has on road users and therefore we strive to plan our works to minimise disruption to local communities and the important tourist economy.  

 

What are BEAR doing to carry out road repairs?

 

BEAR are urging people to report potholes. This can usually be done through the BEAR website under the ‘report a defect’ function, or by calling Transport Scotland’s Freephone trunk road customer care line on 0800 028 1414.

Our teams are now well underway with a £24M programme of surfacing improvements at over 200 locations across the North West Unit before the end of this year, with teams working to minimise any disruption to road users wherever they can.  

For all up to date traffic information, visit Traffic Scotland at www.trafficscotland.org, their new mobile site at my.trafficscotland.org or on twitter @trafficscotland.

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts

£650,000 urgent resurfacing repair programme launched for A8306 Feb 2018

Works commence from Tuesday 6th February

 

Click here to read about progress through the A83 urgent repair programme

Motorists using the A83 between the Rest & Be Thankful and Whitehouse are to benefit from an accelerated repair programme, as £650,000 worth of urgent resurfacing works are carried out starting in February 2018. 

BEAR Scotland, acting on behalf of Transport Scotland, are planning to carry out urgent resurfacing works on a sections of the A83, situated between Rest & Be Thankful and Whitehouse.  The route is being inspected daily and hundreds of temporary repairs have been made in the past two months.. This inspection and repair work remains a priority and will continue however it requires to be followed up by permanent repairs. 

Click the link at the bottom of this page to download a copy of the A83 programme of urgent repairs.

Following successful discussions with our surfacing contractor, we are pleased to announce that the programme for repairs will now commence on Tuesday 6th February. A rolling programme of work will be carried out in order to address the most urgent locations on the route. Work will be carried out between 7am and 7pm each working day.

The majority of work will be carried out under convoy working, however, due to restricted road widths at certain locations some work will require periods of ‘STOP/STOP’ working. Motorists should therefore expect some delays.

Emergency services will be able to pass through the works at all times. Access to properties within the closure and for local bus services will also be maintained at all times, although some delay is inevitable. The road will be fully open during the day.

Eddie Ross, Operating Company Representative for the North West Unit, said:“A spokesperson for BEAR Scotland said: “We’re pleased to announce we have successfully accelerated a programme of work to address sections of the A83 which have deteriorated rapidly following the harsh freeze and thaw cycle experienced earlier this month.

“£650,000 has been set aside to address defects specifically on the A83, with teams working to prioritise multiple areas across the route between the Rest and Be Thankful and Whitehouse.

“Some of these areas were identified for future surfacing last year and added to our upcoming programme of planned work, however sections have deteriorated badly following the huge impact of ice and freezing winter weather causing the road surface to break up and have been brought forward.  Others are new additions to the programme that were also impacted by the winter weather.   

“In the meantime teams are carrying out temporary repairs where possible, erecting signs to advise motorists of the uneven road surface in some places and carrying out weekly safety inspections across the whole network to note any defects.

 “Should anyone wish to report a specific defect on trunk roads, please call the Freephone number 0800 028 1414.”

 Real-time journey planning information can be obtained by visiting www.trafficscotland.org or twitter @trafficscotland.

downloadNew File

Back to news list

View Older PostsView Newer Posts