Four options to solve 'complex' A40 rockfall problem

The rockfall on the A40
The rockfall on the A40 -Credit:National Highways

Progress has been made in clearing the A40 on the Herefordshire/Monmouthshire border following a rockfall, with a series of proposals now on the table to remove the debris. Traffic management experts have outlined four potential strategies that would provide roadworkers with a safe working space at Leys Bend for debris removal and further detailed surveys of the embankment.

Currently, one lane is closed on the eastbound carriageway. A temporary concrete barrier is in place to prevent any additional rocks from falling into the path of traffic.

Joseph Walmsley, National Highways Route Manager, stated: "We need to strike a balance between getting the debris removed as safely and as soon as possible, but also minimising disruption on this busy route for drivers and local communities. Our experts have now devised four options for closing the road to enable the removal to take place but we want to get input from our key stakeholders and local authorities to make sure we choose the option that will best suit everyone."

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He added: "Safety is always our priority which is why we have had to partially close the road but we are aware of the disruption this incident has caused and are anxious to limit any further disturbance as much as possible."

Four options have been put forward
Four options have been put forward -Credit:National Highways

The four options include:.

  • Four full weekend closures of the A40 during the school holidays this summer

  • A contraflow reducing the road to one lane in each direction beginning in September and remaining in place until mid-October with some lane and overnight closures in August and October

  • Four full weekend closures in September, avoiding the main summer holiday period

  • A contraflow put in place in October, after the summer, and in place until early November with some overnight closures in September and November.

Potential diversion routes during the closures are also being considered but all will aim to reroute the traffic away from the town of Monmouth. Since the rockfall in February, engineering specialists have been investigating the damage caused, the stability of the hillside and options for carrying out repairs.

Route Manager Joseph added: “Our investigations into this complex situation have been extensive as we had to be confident that the repairs we carry out can be done safely and will not affect the stability of the hillside. We are grateful to people for their continued patience while we deal with this unexpected situation.”

A webpage has been set up to provide the latest updates and information about the scheme and can be found here :