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.”


Add Your Comment
  • Michael Garriock

    • January 20th, 2015 15:29

    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.

    • Dave Cooper

      • January 21st, 2015 9:03

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

      • Robert Duncan

        • January 21st, 2015 14:48

        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

        • January 21st, 2015 16:12

        @ 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.

  • Dave Cooper

    • January 27th, 2015 9:22

    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.


Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.