Vital safety features to be improved on cliff-top road

Work to update safety measures on a spectacular coastal road near Watchet begins next month with the installation of new safety gates and advanced signage.

The scheme on the B3191 Cleeve Hill Road is based on flood gates installed on the Somerset Levels, and will prevent access either side of the narrowest section of the road in the event of an alarm being triggered which warns of possible movement of the cliff. The road forms part of the coastal footpath and there will also be a signed diversion route for footpath users incorporated into the scheme.

Work commences on Monday 5 September and is expected to last for 5 days. During the works the road will be closed between 8.00am to 5.00 pm daily but will be open at all other times

Currently the monitoring system detects movement of the cliff and sends out messages to activate signage and teams carry out a closure. Unfortunately, this signage is often moved by drivers for vehicles to pass through which can be extremely dangerous.

The new system will see large gates placed across the road and locked into position when alarms are triggered. In addition, there will also be two advanced signs on the Blue Anchor side to warn oncoming traffic of the closure and one advanced sign on the Watchet side. Site investigations will then be carried out and the road reopened as quickly as possible.

Executive Lead Member for Transport and Digital, Cllr Mike Rigby, said: “Cleeve Hill is a complex site and requires the utmost care when investigating potential ground movement and reopening.

“Ensuring safety for our road users is always paramount and this new system will provide an additional layer of safety to Cleeve Hill.”

Submitted by Communications