Scotland's most notorious road has reopened today after some 12,000 tonnes of debris fell on it over the weekend.

Transport Scotland's maintenance contractor BEAR Scotland said the whole route reopened at 3pm, having been shut since Friday evening.

It comes after a major clear-up operation following seven landslides on the road after heavy rainfall on Friday evening and Saturday.

The area around the A83 saw a month’s worth of rainfall, around 160mm, fall over 36 hours.

Following the re-opening of the A83, BEAR Scotland teams will remain on site to monitor the areas affected by the landslides in the coming days, and will be supported by geotechnical engineers who will continue to inspect the affected sections of hillside.

 Regular inspections of the hillside at the Rest and be Thankful will also continue.

READ MORE: A83 at Rest and be Thankful: Road fears as depth of chaos laid bare

Fears over the road at the Rest hit fresh heights on August 4, 2020, when some 6,000 tonnes of debris cascaded onto the A83 at the Rest and be Thankful, at least 3,500 tonnes less than the latest episode.

Campaigners have said they have been warned by Transport Scotland officials that there was 100,000 tonnes of unstable material on the hillside above the A83 at the Rest and be Thankful just before the latest landslides which they say shows more needed to be done to ensure the safety of those using the road.

The Herald: After: How it looks now after two landslides on the A83 at the A815 Dunoon junction. 

Of the seven landslips that hit the A83 on Saturday, one hit the Rest.

The rest occurred between two and four miles north and west of where a planned £470m debris shelter is due to be built on the notorious Rest stretch of road as a key long-term measure to protect the road.

A mother and daughter who had a lucky escape on the road say they were hit by two landslides, the last of which was close to the A83 junction with the A815 - around four miles from the end of the proposed landslip shelter.

READ MORE: A83 at Rest and be Thankful: Don't travel warning after landslides

Kiera Smith, 19, and mum Fiona, 44 from Campbeltown were travelling on the road on Saturday morning when their Vauxhall Zafira was hit.

A passing police officer attempted to help them both but could only scream “run” when the landslide came towards them and swept their car into a ravine. 

Transport Scotland's road maintenance contractor BEAR Scotland had shut the crucial Highland's artery at the Rest on Friday evening, fearing further landslides. They sent motorists onto a parallel single track route, the Old Military Road (OMR), which runs through the centre of Glen Croe and acts as a diversion using a convoy system.

But the measure did not stop road users from having their journeys curtailed on the route, with motorists having to go on long detours as landslides shifted away from where the shelter is due to be built.

The road was due to reopen by Monday, until the road engineers' fears were realised and so far there is no timetable for the A83 stretch between Inverary and the Rest to re-open.

Saturday's events marked the first major landslips since August 2020 which led to a series of closures.

By the end of August, the road had been closed for the same length of time as over the five years between January 2007 and October, 2012 which led to an investigation into how to handle the hillside stability.

In 2020 alone it was shut for over 200 days.

A campaign backed by 1500 businesses has been pushing for a permanent fix for the landslip issues to be delivered by 2024.

But they are unlikely to get their wishes.

There has been anger over ministers "wasting" up to £130m over more than a decade on failed solutions to the landslide issue.

Concerns have been raised about the millions spent on temporary solutions to the landslip problem which were first highlighted in the Scottish Road Network Landslides Study part authored by the then Scottish Executive - 18 years ago.

Ian Stewart, BEAR Scotland’s north west representative, said: “Our teams have worked tirelessly in challenging conditions to reopen the A83 to all traffic. We are very grateful to our colleagues and partners, as well as local residents for all your support and patience during this challenging time.”