Drivers warned to expect chaos as cyclists ride A82
ROAD users have been warned to expect ‘chaos and delays’ by campaign group, the A82 Partnership, in the run-up to a cycling event in which a woman died last year.
On Friday, September 11, there is expected to be 800 cyclists travelling north on the road from Crianlarich to Fort William for the annual Ride Across Britain event.
The A82 partnership previously appealed to organisers, Deloitte, to re- consider the route, after it raised concerns over the amount of traffic already using the road coupled with the safety of cyclists and travellers on the day. But their appeals stating that there were no overtaking opportunities on the 10-mile stretch between Onich and Fort William failed to budge Deloitte organisers, who went ahead anyway.
During last year’s ride from Land’s End to John O’ Groats, mother of two, Sally Preece, 49, from Cheltenham, died when her bike collided with a car on the A85 near to Loch Earn.
Following the death of Mrs Preece, the journey was curtailed and cyclists were bussed along the A82 to their overnight stop at Torlundy, but plans look likely to go-ahead again this year.
Councillor Brian Murphy, chairman of the A82 partnership, said: ‘ We are all already aware of the impact on traffic flows of just two cyclists travelling between Onich and Fort William, but to have numerous groups of up to 30 will cause significant delays and will result in frustration.
‘To arrive in Fort William on a Friday afternoon is utter madness. Traffic travelling north out of Fort William on a Friday afternoon on a normal week faces significant delays, so I cannot imagine the impact of an additional 800 cyclists on this traffic flow.’
Nick Tuppen of Deloitte said: ‘The safety of our riders has always been a top priority along with minimising disruption for the local communities. In view of the tragic accident last year, we have worked particularly closely with Transport Scotland and Police Scotland to understand the challenges of the area you have referenced.’