“There is the potential for a catastrophic landslip that could prove fatal to anyone in its path,” Bath & North East Somerset Council said yesterday.
Water moving deep underground has destabilised the road and works so far have indicated that the ground is slipping by as much as seven metres below the road surface.
The road has been closed since 17th February and has led to long diversions and holds-ups on the A4, Keynsham bypass and Keynsham Road. The A420 through Wick and Lansdown Road have also been much busier.
The council said: “We understand the impact on people’s journeys but the safety of the travelling public is absolutely paramount and until there is a solution in place, we cannot consider allowing vehicles, cyclists or people on foot to use this stretch of highway.
“We’ve deployed the latest state-of-the-art equipment including CCTV, ground radar technology, expert independent geotechnical engineers and drilling rigs to gather intelligence about the geological characteristics underneath Kelston Road and the adjacent land. Up to 20 boreholes need to be drilled, including on land either side of the road. Additional excavations will be dug to examine underground features.”
Meanwhile the Crown pub at Kelston has erected signs saying that it is still accessible from the Bitton side, while the Upton Inn at Upton Cheyney has also been publicising the fact that all the roads leading to it are open.