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By Hannah O’Hanlon
Traffic lights which have held up west Kintyre drivers for weeks should soon be removed.
A week-long repair programme is scheduled to begin on Monday, January 7, to fix a damaged culvert which led to flooding on the A83 at Patchen.
Temporary traffic lights were erected after the flood, caused by heavy rain on November 7, covered both lanes of the road between Glenbarr and Bellochantuy.
Some of the water subsided, leaving the northbound lane clear but the southbound lane remains waterlogged.
The situation was cause for discussion at West Kintyre Community Council’s November 19 meeting, with members concerned at how long it was taking to fix the flooding and remove the lights.
The issue of safety was raised, as the lights have been out of operation several times despite one lane being coned off.
It was speculated that the reason for that was the fuel running out in the generator which powers the lights.
Potential damage to the road’s surface was also discussed, as £30,000 of resurfacing work was carried out in August to fix the badly deteriorated stretch of road.
A spokesperson for BEAR Scotland, which maintains the trunk road on behalf of Transport Scotland, said: ‘The temporary traffic lights on the A83 at Bellochantuy are in place for safety to help protect road users from a damaged culvert next to the roadside.
‘A repair has been programmed to take place week commencing January 7, which will take around a week to complete.
‘In the meantime our teams will monitor the lights until the repairs are complete and it is safe to remove the traffic management.’
Traffic lights have been up around the flood for nearly two months. 50_c01trafficlights01