Rock fall scheme resumes – MLA

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A FORMER head of Roads Service locally has been credited with ensuring the continuation of measures aimed at preventing rock falls on the Coast Road.

The late Bob McKay, who was regional manager in the North East, took a special interest in the scheme, said Sinn Fein MLA for East Antrim, Oliver McMullan, who revealed that the second phase is to commence soon.

“It is testament to the foresight of the late Bob McKay, who made the case for the funding, that the DRD will be going back to Garron Point in the spring to install more wire netting that will help to prevent the landslides that have caused the closure of the road on many occasions,” said Mr McMullan.

“I called for the installation of the snetting after seeing how effective it had proved in Scotland because this is a main arterial road for many people travelling to Larne and the port, as well as being a very important road for tourism. We need to do everything possible to keep it open at all times,” he added.

“I was very impressed with the outcome, which has made the road safer after a comprehensive geological survey and an engineering study. I have been told the second phase, which will entail fixing more netting to the rock face, will start when the weather improves this year,” said Mr McMullan.

The scheme entails engineers abseiling down the limestone cliff to secure the heavy metal netting.

A DRD spokeseprson said this week: “Roads Service continues to work with specialist consultants to assess a number of areas of the Coast Road. A major project is ongoing to consider solutions to the ongoing problem of rock falls at Garron Point.”