Emergency Services consulted over arrangements for proposed weekend closure

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Forestry Commission Scotland staff last week (Wednesday 28 September) met with the emergency services in the Lochaber area to discuss alternative arrangements for the proposed weekend closure of a section of the A82 in late November/early December.

The closure – affecting a stretch of road south of Fort William - would be to carry out a controlled operation to bring down a potentially unstable 250 tonne rock that is a potential public safety hazard.

Attending the meeting were representatives of the police, fire and ambulance services as well as representatives of the local NHS and Highland Council together with key managers from Transport Scotland and Transerv.

Mike Green, the Commission’s project leader said:

“We are in the process of consulting widely about the operation because we know that we need to do as much as we can, as soon as we can, to help people plan around the proposed closure.

“This is especially important for the emergency services because maintaining emergency cover over the weekend of our operation to remove this rock will place very particular demands on their resources.

“It will take some involved planning and whilst the operation has the potential to disrupt it is very reassuring to note the professionalism of the emergency services and other key service providers in respect of their initial responses to contingency planning.”

Information about the short-term arrangements – as well as the Commission’s 3-year programme - will be publicised through the local media and on the Commission’s dedicated web pages at www.forestry.gov.uk/a82operations

Links to the emergency services websites will also be published as plans to deal with teh weekend closure are established.

Follow us on http://www.twitter.com/a82operations

Notes to Editors
1) Forestry Commission Scotland serves as the Scottish Government’s forestry directorate, managing, enhancing and expanding the 660,000 hectare national forest estate in ways that deliver benefits to people, communities, biodiversity and the economy. www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland

e-mail: paul.munro@forestry.gsi.gov.uk