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Monmouthshire County Council and National Highways have issued a joint update on the works on the A40 near Monmouth.

Along with other partners, the organisations have pulled together quickly to deal with the emergency and ensure the safety of road users.

The traffic management which was put in place to open up a lane on the carriageway for traffic was designed to accommodate hazards at the site – which include recent rainfall and the bend in the road.

All organisations are aware that the lane closure, which is vital to protect road users, is having a disruptive effect.

The issue of traffic backing up from Beech Road onto the A40 was also raised at a meeting held in Monmouth last week.

Discussions are taking place to agree on potential tweaks to the traffic management to alleviate this disruption.

Options being investigated include reviewing the length and/or location of the lane tapering and whether or not it could be moved past Dixton Roundabout, introducing a contraflow system and tweaks to signage.

National Highways is liaising with Monmouthshire County Council and South Wales Trunk Road Agency to agree the details.

Specialists at National Highways, and experts commissioned to help develop the work programme, have warned that removing the fallen rocks could lead to further rockfall and landslips and further surveys are needed to determine an appropriate action plan.

National Highways will provide details of the timelines for the works as soon as possible and are working with the county council and SWTRA to ensure the road closures necessary to safely carry out these works are managed as effectively as possible to minimise the impact on road user.

National Highways Head of Planning and Development, Victoria Lazenby, said: “Addressing the rockfall on the A40 is a high priority for National Highways in the Midlands and we have specialist teams working hard to develop and design a resolution to this issue.

“This is a complex issue and the safety of road users and road workers is of paramount importance when considering the options.

“We are liaising closely with partners, including Monmouthshire County Council and South Wales Trunk Road Agency, as we manage this incident. We appreciate the impact this incident is having on road users and are investigating opportunities to ease that disruption while maintaining safety. 

“We appreciate people’s patience while we determine a way to deal with this emergency as quickly as possible and with the minimum disruption.”