Avon and Somerset Police are giving people advance warning of an abnormal load which will be travelling through the Bath area over the weekend.
Allelys Heavy Haulage of Studley is transporting transformers from Didcot power station to Avonmouth Docks. The load will take up two lanes on motorways and both lanes of single carriageway stretches of road.
The loads are almost 100m long and 5m wide, weigh around 640 tonnes and will travel at an average four mph – walking pace – and even more slowly on uphill stretches.
Police cannot guarantee the timings outlined below, but the expected schedule is:
- Friday 15th November – leave Didcot at about 7pm, taking up both lanes of the southbound A34 from Didcot to the M4 junction 13 at Chievely, ahead of a planned closure of the A34 from the A4130 Milton Interchange and junction 13 for roadworks over the weekend. The load will lay up overnight at the M4 junction 13 Chievely.
- Saturday 16th November – leave Chieveley at approximately 9am, leaving the M4 at Tormarton for the A46 and arriving at the Tog Hill parking area on the A420 at about 6pm for an overnight rest stop.
- Sunday 17th November – leave the Tog Hill parking area at about 9am, reaching Avonmouth at about 6pm.
As the load is too heavy for the M4 near junction 19, it will use A roads on part of its journey through the Avon and Somerset policing area.
Once the load leaves the M4 at junction 18, Tormarton, it will travel along the A46 to the A420, parking up for the driver’s rest period at Tog Hill at about 6pm.
On Sunday it will undergo a series of safety checks before leaving at about 9am. It will be escorted along the A420 and is expected to arrive at Wick by about 11am. When it reaches the village there will be a delay as steel plates are laid on the road where it passes over two culverts.
The route then takes it to the A4174. When it reaches the Bromley Heath roundabout the road will be closed from there to the M32 junction so that the load can travel on the wrong side of the dual carriageway to avoid a weak bridge.
At the junction with Bristol Road, the load will return to the correct carriageway and continue onto the M32, rejoining the M4 before taking the M5 to Avonmouth.
The provisional dates for the third load to be transported are Saturday 23rd November and Sunday 24th November – but this could be subject to change.