Road collapse could result in fatality - claim local residents

Paul McGilloway surveys the trees and structures at the rear of Beechwood. DER4313Sl002
Paul McGilloway surveys the trees and structures at the rear of Beechwood. DER4313Sl002

Residents of West End Terrace have spoken of their fear that a nearby road collapse could result in someone being killed.

In response Road Service have confirmed they are to conduct a structural survey at Beechwood Avenue.

The steeply inclined Avenue overlooks the rear of the homes on West End Terrace.

A number of West End residents contacted the ‘Journal’ to express concerns that the embankment could give way.

If it were to do so, they argue, the road and any traffic on it, would come tumbling into their gardens below.

Those fears were underlined last year when sections of a nearby wall collapsed.

That landslide, at Marlborough Terrace, forced a number of residents from their homes for weeks.

Local resident Eamon Doherty recalls how the wall suffered a partial collapse some 25 years ago and claims it was never fully repaired.

“The fear is that there is no retaining concrete wall supporting the road,” he said. “If a heavy goods vehicle were to go up it the road would struggle to support it. The banking is covered in trees but it is rat infested, used as a dumping ground and subsiding.

“If there was a collapse anyone underneath would be at risk of being killed. They couldn’t survive it.

“The residents have been begging for something to be done for years.

“The land and banking are subsiding at an alarming rate. All too often soil has been washed down from the banking into the gardens. This must be weakening the road.”

Derry City Council confirmed that they are examining the issue with residents.

A spokesperson for Road Service confirmed they are “aware of concerns from local residents over the condition of the retaining wall at Beechwood Avenue.”

They added: “Currently there are no obvious indications that the stability of the wall may be compromised. However in order to assess the future maintenance needs of the structure, a full structural and condition survey has been procured. Upon receipt of the report, any improvement or remedial work identified as being necessary will be duly considered.”