PLANS to control log lorries using the B709 between Innerleithen and Heriot appear to have reached a dead end.
SBC Councillor Gavin Logan informed Community Councillors and members of the public at their monthly meeting last Monday night that he felt it unlikely he and his fellow Tweeddale East Councillors would receive any backing in their attempts to negotiate a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) on the B709.
With as many as four lorries using the road as a short-cut on a daily basis there have been growing concern at the damage caused by the massive lorries to the road and to the safety of other drivers meeting the monster trucks on the single track road.
Councillor Logan said: "Throughout the year I have been monitoring the road usage, I have been in dialogue with Scottish Borders Council officials and lorry companies. There is little doubt that the road is unsuitable for certain classes of vehicle and the damage to the road is unacceptable. The edge of the road is crumbling away with deep ruts and pot holes." But on Monday Councillor Logan revealed that Council officials were unconvinced a TRO would work.
He read out a letter from Brian Young, SBC Network Manager who stated: "The erection of signs to prohibit HGVs on any part of the network would require a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO).
"This is a statutory procedure that involves a lengthy legal process that includes advertising in local papers and formal consultation with interested parties. "There are only certain reasons why a TRO can be promoted and although the route in question is perhaps not ideal for this type of traffic, it is regrettably no different than countless other routes in this regard, and there are no specific physical reasons for us to promote such an order on the B709.
"In any case it is unlikely that this would be successful as from previous experience it would inevitably bring objections from national organisations such as the Road Freight Association as well as local farmers and businesses who require to use the route on a regular basis." But since the meeting Councillor Logan has promised to ask the Environmental and Infrastructure Service committee (which he is a member) to carry out a review on the damage to Scottish Borders roads by timber lorries with a view to a more robust approach to serving TROs.