Fellow feeling for Wester Ross as Christmas Day landslide closes A890

[Updated 27th December below] The A890 at Stromeferry, between Lochcarron and Kyle of Lochalsh closed yesterday, Christmas Day, with another landslide and is expected to be shut for up to four days.

The road was last a year ago – from 22nd December 2011 until 19th March when more than 100 tonnes of rock came down on the road at the Stromeferry bypass. There was a further landslide a few days later.

This led to a passenger ferry and a car ferry being run across Loch Carrom to get children to school and to enable passage – leading to Strome Ferry living up to a name that had had no literalĀ  meaning for decades.

In addition, ‘Holdfast pacing’ was eventually laid over a section of the rail line between Kyle of Loch Alsh and Inverness – the most scenic in Britain – to allow vehicles of under 7.5 tonnes to drive on it between 7 am and 7 pm each day of the week.

As a similarly stricken part of the world, with the landslip-prone A83 at Rest and Be Thankful currently hanging on in the face of days of rainfall, Argyll has every reason to understand just what this feels like up in Wester Ross.

With this latest landslide taking place on Christmas Day, sympathy also goes to the crews from Scotland Transerv who will have been called out at lunchtime yesterday, of all days, with days more of heavy work ahead of them.

Update 27th December: With epic effort by the road crews – which included also bringing down and clearing another 50 tonnes of overhanging rock that was threatening to let go spontaneously – the A890 was actually reopened today at around 17.00.

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