Specialist teams working to re-open busy Derbyshire road after loose rock led to emergency closure
Specialist rope teams have been brought in to help after a 150 tonne boulder came loose and forced the closure of a busy Derbyshire road.
Derbyshire County Council said the teams are working seven days a week to make the rock face safe.
An emergency road closure has been in place since Monday on the A5012 Via Gellia road between the Ryder Point junction and Grangemill crossroads after the loose rock was identified during an inspection.
The closure is scheduled for three weeks, but specialist teams are doing all they can to make the area safe as quickly as possible – by bolting the boulder back to the rock face and installing specialist netting to prevent further rock movement.
The aim is to minimise the closure duration and re-open the road under traffic light control as soon as possible while work to the rock face continues.
Currently, diversionary routes are in place via the A6, A5270 and the A515.
Councillor Simon Spencer, Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Infrastructure, said: “Unfortunately, the emergency road closure is unavoidable. When a 150 tonne rock overhanging a busy road comes loose, we have to protect motorists and make the area safe.
“However, we realise the effect such a closure will have on local businesses and residents and are pulling out all the stops to allow traffic to safely use the road again as soon as possible.
“We’ve drafted in extra resources and specialist teams are working seven days a week to make the necessary repairs as soon as possible.”
Discussions are on-going with electricity distribution company Western Power which was scheduled to close nearby Manystones Lane on Monday (3 July) to install new cabling beneath the road’s surface. This work is now expected to be delayed.
Councillor Spencer added: “A lot of heavy goods vehicles rely on the A5012 as a main route through the area and it’s important that these larger vehicles stick to the official diversionary route which provides the same standard of roads.
“However, we realise local traffic may choose to follow unsigned alternative routes using narrower roads, including Manystones Lane. We’ll continue to work with Western Power to see if any other measures can be taken to alleviate potential problems.”