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Disruption for motorists as work starts to prevent rock falls at Loch Ness

The rocks fell on Thursday but the road will remain closed throughout the weekend
The rocks fell on Thursday but the road will remain closed throughout the weekend

Work to prevent rocks from falling onto a key road at a Highland beauty spot is expected to cause traffic disruption for the next six weeks.

Contractors are removing sections of the rock face close to the roadside on the A82 Inverness to Fort William route, about three miles north of Drumnadrochit.

The £226,000 project, funded by Transport Scotland, involves installing specialist netting and bolts across the rock to secure and stabilise the slope face.

The work, which got under way on Tuesday, is being carried out between 8am and 5pm each day from Monday to Saturdays, with no work taking place on Sundays.

A 10mph convoy system will be in operation, although it will be lifted outside of working hours, with temporary traffic lights put in place instead.

Rock falls have caused major problems on the route in recent years, prompting action from Bear Scotland and Transport Scotland.

Six vehicles were damaged in December 2015 after rocks and debris tumbled onto the A82 between Drumnadrochit and Invermoriston.

In March of that year the same stretch of road was closed for several days, leaving drivers facing a 120-mile detour, after bad weather dislodged huge rocks, which then plummeted onto the carriageway.

It is thought they were dislodged after an oak tree fell further up the slope and landed on a boulder field.

Consultation on the stabilisation works has taken place with the local authority, transport operators and local businesses to make them aware of the planned improvements.

Eddie Ross, BEAR Scotland’s representative for the north west, said: “This latest investment to the A82 will help increase road safety by removing part of the rock slope next to the road side.

“As a further safety measure the slope will also be secured with wire netting to prevent any debris reaching the carriageway.

“The traffic management is necessary to keep everyone safe during works, however the teams will look to complete it as quickly and safely as possible.

“We’d encourage motorists to plan their journeys in advance and check the Traffic Scotland website for up to date travel information before setting off.”

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