16th November 2018
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Main road to be closed at Levenwick

The lorry off the road at Levenwick. Photo: Dave Donaldson

The lorry off the road at Levenwick. Photo: Dave Donaldson

The main A970 at Levenwick will be closed today for some time to allow the recovery of a lorry which came off the road yesterday.

The incident happened around tea time on Monday, when a Garriock Bros low-loader carrying a digger tumbled over the embankment on the lower side of the road. The driver luckily escaped uninjured.

According to the SIC roads service the work to recover the lorry is expected to take several hours today. Workmen were on site today trying to recover the vehicles.

Communications spokesman Bob Kerr said: “Alternative routes exist through the Levenwick loop road; and through Bigton and Scousburgh.

“Both of these roads are single track roads with passing places and drivers may expect some congestion and delays.

“Anyone travelling to Sumburgh Airport to connect with a flight should allow extra time for their journey.”

5 comments

  1. Michael Garriock

    Well, it was just an accident waiting to happen, wasn’t it.

    In the 70’s, 80’s and in to the 90’s the SIC created and followed through with an arguably very wise and prudent policy of putting in place a modern high quality arterial main road from one end of Shetland to the other, but in a classic “aetin da coo, bit shokkin upoa da tail” scenario, never quite finished the job. Distracted as they apparently were by numerous other ‘pie in the sky’ bridges and suchlike.

    Between the north and south Bigton junctions there is more than one section of road that has only had a few minor tweaks and a little cosmetic surgery done to them so that they “look” as good as the rest, but have never received the full rebuild treatment elsewhere has, and remain for all intents and purposes the same road that was there 40-50 years ago, if not much older. This incident has occured in the middle of one of those old sections. These are roads that were never designed or intended for either the size of vehicles now using them regularly, or the daily volume of traffic on them.

    Had the SIC actually gone through with and finished what they started and made a new road all the way from south to north, instead of just paying lip service to give the impression they had, in this and one or two other areas nearby. It is very likely neither this incident nor the previous problems in the same area when rock was being transported last year would ever have arisen.

    Once more, the rest of us reap what the SIC sow.

    Reply
    • Dave Cooper

      If the road is known as not suitable for that type of vehicle what was it doing there in the first place.

      Reply
      • Robert Duncan

        Is there an alternative route for vehicles travelling that direction? I don’t expect the winding cliffside roads around Bigton are any better.

      • Michael Garriock

        @ Dave Cooper, It either went there, or didn’t go at all. The only alternatives are even less suitable for a vehicle such as this.

        When you have an “A” class road stretching the length of the Mainland, which has all been rebuilt to modern standards during the last 40 years, with the last rebuilding work done circa 20 years ago, and still have a couple of relatively short sections near one end that are a far older road in both terms of design and quality, its asking for trouble enough. But when you then disguise those older sections to look the same as the rest of the newer road, you’re courting disaster. Folk just don’t realise the difference in quality until they’re in the mess of blind and semi-blind corners and summits, barely adequate lane widths for larger vehicles, incorrect cambers and soft verges instead of hard shoulders.

        Its not just large vehicles it affects, it affects everybody equally, but by definition it is the larger ones that make the headlines first on account of them stretching more of the limitations further, of an obsolete facility hiding in the midst of a much superior one than your average family car.

  2. Dave Cooper

    Oh dear. It looks as though I am not going to make it as a comedy writer.

    I am sure that the authorities unlike us with full access to all the facts will decide the outcome.

    The fact remains. The road is fixed. The vehicle is the variable. If a road is not suitable for your vehicle don’t take it down there. Use something else instead.
    It’s no good ripping the roof of the van & then jumping up & down saying that the low bridge should not have been there.

    Reply

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