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Kier starts project to repair flood-damaged road

A591 repairs underway

Kier has started work to repair a key Lake District road that was badly damaged by storms in December.

The contractor began a project to rebuild the A591 at Dunmail Raise after a section collapsed after taking a battering from storms Desmond and Eva.

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin last month instructed Highways England to lead work on the A591 so local authorities could focus resources on the immediate clean-up effort from the extreme weather.

Construction work has now started on a new concrete retaining wall in the beck at the side of the collapsed part of the road. A 22-tonne excavator is among the equipment being used.

Once the new concrete retaining wall has been built in the beck, the gap in the road caused by the storm damage will be backfilled with crushed stone before a new road surface is laid on top.

A new wall will be constructed from local stone in front of the retaining wall.

McLoughlin said this week: “We are determined to reopen the A591 as soon as possible, and I am pleased the people of Cumbria can see we are making progress.

“Tourism is a vital part of the local economy, so fixing this road will make a real difference to the region.”

The A591, which runs between Grasmere and Keswick, has been closed between St Johns in the Vale and Dunmail Raise since December.

Work on a second section of damaged road further north is also underway. A helicopter survey is due to take place shortly, which will provide detailed technical information about the stability of the scree slopes adjacent to the A591.

Other survey information is also being used to identify what repairs are required to storm drains, bridges and the road surface so the A591 can fully re-open by the end of May.


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