Procedures and equipment used to decide when to close the Skye Bridge because of high winds, are being reviewed following a flow of complaints from islanders over frequent closures recently.

Local councillors and MSPs have taken up the issue with Transport Scotland.

Figures showed it shut to high-sided vehicles almost 100 times between last September and January, and closed to all vehicles 14 times.

But in the previous two years, the bridge had only been only to all vehicles because of bad weather on one occasion.

The wind management plan for the bridge requires that it is closed to high sided vehicles when the wind gust speed exceeds 50 mph and closed to all vehicles when it exceeds 75 mph.

Transport Minister Derek Mackay revealed the closure figures in answer to parliamentary questions tabled by Highland MSP and Shadow Transport & Islands Minister, David Stewart.

A Transport Scotland spokeswoman said:

"We understand the current concerns about the number of recent closures on the Skye Bridge and we are working with local representatives from Police Scotland, our operating company BEAR Scotland and the local authority to address these."

The top priority had to be safety, but disruption should also be minimised, she said .

Advice from the Met Office had established that that wind speeds had frequently been higher than in the recent past and contractors had examined the equipment on the bridge and advised it was working correctly.

She continued: "However, as part of the overall plan we are looking to see if any upgrades can be made. We are also reviewing the procedures around the bridge closures, especially with regard to high sided vehicles, and looking to put a more efficient system in place to warn people about the likely restrictions."

Mr Stewart said the closure thresholds on the bridge had not been reconsidered formally since they were introduced in 2004. In part this was due them having been seen to work well. However tourists, local residents and businesses had raised their concerns over the increased frequency of closures with him.

"Whilst road safety should always be the first and foremost priority I am delighted the Scottish Government will look again at the instruments used to make decisions about bridge closures given that they have not assessed the impact of these closures to Skye and the surrounding areas economy," he said.