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News | 29th October 2021

Trip Hazard

Surface of suspension bridge unsafe


CONCERNS over the ‘bubbling’ of the newly repaired suspension bridge in Langholm has been raised by locals, including a former councillor.

Dumfries & Galloway council have responded to complaints, notifying residents that they will look to fix the surfacing of the bridge, which has been classed as a ‘trip-hazard’, in the next 10 days.

Refurbishment to the suspension bridge to improve its deteriorating condition cost £425,000.

Its new surface is meant to be anti-slip, however, it has begun to expand and bubble between the screws.

This could be a cause of the recent continuous heavy rain.

It has seen many complaints from members of the public, some who have said they have tripped while walking across it.

There is said to be at least six areas that could be dangerous for someone who struggles with their walking – and definitely if it freezes.

Former councillor, Denis Male described its current condition since the heavy rain as ‘lethal’.

“It is raised by at least an inch in these areas and will be a definite trip hazard to elderly or infirm people who use it,” he said.

“It looks like the top surface has expanded between the screws and is definitely getting worse with bad weather.

“If it now freezes then it is going to be absolutely lethal.”

A spokesperson for Dumfries & Galloway council said officers had met on Monday with the contractor, Diack and McAuley Construction Services, to inspect the bridge deck surfacing.

The inspection found that there are some localised issues relating to the adhesive between the anti-skid surface and the timber.

“The council and contractor are investigating the issue relating to the adhesive and the surface,” the spokesman said.

“A repair will be carried out as soon as possible, which will require additional fixings to be fitted.”

It is anticipated that this will be within the next 10 days.

There will be no need to shut the bridge.

The council will continue to monitor the surface of the bridge and take any further action as required.

The bridge had been shut since 10 May and work had been due to finish on 27 August but additional work was needed after a main structural cable was also found to be corroded which saw it reopen, instead, on 17 September.

New lighting on the bridge at both ends is still yet to be installed and these are expected to be operational by the end of the month or the beginning of the next.

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