Surface dressing programme to begin soon 

Loose chippings
Credit: SIC

Shetland Islands Council will soon begin the summer programme of surface dressing on roads throughout Shetland.  

Over 80 locations have been identified across the isles for surface dressing, to improve the road surface and protect the road from winter frost damage.  In some locations, work is only needed on short sections of road, while at other locations surface dressing will be done on sections over a mile long. 

Sealing the road surface with a layer of bitumen helps to prevent water penetration and freezing which can over time lead to potholes. Applying a fresh layer of stone chips, pressed into the road surface, also helps to improve skid resistance for vehicles.  The work needs to be done in warmer temperatures during the summer months.

Warning signs of ‘loose chippings’ will be in place at each location during and after work has been completed and drivers are asked to observe these enforceable speed limits while these signs are in place.  

Among the locations with longer sections of road identified for surface dressing are:

  • A968 Collafirth, Delting 
  • B9076 near Firth
  • Ollaberry to Leon
  • Snarraness, near West Burrafirth
  • Papa Stour
  • Laxfirth Road
  • Bridgend to Papil, Burra
  • Gloup, Yell
  • Hannigarth, Unst
  • Treawick, Whalsay 

Neil Hutcheson, Executive Manager – Roads, said: “We’ll soon begin our summer programme of surface dressing which is an essential part of our annual roads maintenance programme.  This work may cause some delays in areas where work is being done and we’d ask drivers to keep their speed down in any areas where stone chips have been laid.”  

Published: 15th May 2023