Experts examine Old Beer Road

PUBLISHED: 17:05 23 July 2012 | UPDATED: 17:15 23 July 2012

Report being produced on the collapsed road.

Structural engineers from Devon County Council and geotechnical experts have been carrying out examations on Old Beer Road in Seaton which collapsed following the recent heavy downpours.

The road and footway has been closed since last Thursday (12 July) after cracks first appeared, before a large section of the road fell away.

People are still being warned to stay away from the site which has been completely fenced off.

Experts have been on site and found that the movement on Old Beer Road has been caused by a large scale slip of the cliff face rather than a small localised failure.

Most of the material has slipped down onto the beach, which has been closed by East Devon District Council, and also rolled over onto the lower cliff slopes, covering the top surface of the rock armour on the beach.

Their findings show the kerbing either side of the collapse now appears to have moved as a small crack has opened up between the road surface and the kerb.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highways and Transportation, said: “The geotechnical and structural surveys are still on-going but local people who have seen the road and how it has fallen away will realise that it is looking increasingly unlikely that the road could be repaired and re-opened to traffic.

“However we will be considering in more detail what could be achieved in this area, even if it’s just maintaining the coastal footpath, but this will require further inspection. In the mean time I would like to remind everyone that this road is closed for the safety of the public.”

Councillor Jim Knight, County Councillor and East Devon District Councillor for Seaton, added: “This is a serious blow to Seaton and Beer who rely on this route to walk in safety to the amenities and schools that either parish send their children to, and it is also a route for holiday visitors.

“I sincerely hope that the coastal walk can be retained, if not, the County Council must look at providing safe passage to either parish even if this means putting in a footpath along Beer Road through to Beer.”

Further soil investigation will have to be carried out.

The South West Coast Path has been diverted from the route and diversion signs remain in place.


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