A MORAY HAULAGE firm has been highlighting the additional costs of transporting whisky along a narrow Speyside road – £1000 a month in wing mirror components!
The unusual issue is being caused by some narrow sections of the A95, the main artery used for transportation from several Speyside distilleries.
It emerged in a meeting between Moray MSP Richard Lochhead and Martin Brown, the director of McPhersons of Aberlour – who pointed to the monthly bill his firm is facing to replace broken wing mirror components on the route.
Now Mr Lochhead is looking for clarification from Transport Scotland on their plans for improvements along the most challenging section of the route – and calling on the problematic narrow sections to be given priority.
The MSP added that there was a good case for the UK Government to contribute to the upkeep of the road, given the vast sums that the Speyside Whisky industry is contributing to the UK Treasury annually.
Mr Lochhead said: “The A95, Scotland’s “whisky highway’ is absolutely key to Moray’s economy with millions of litres of whisky transported on the road every week.
“All agencies recognise that the road improvements are needed on the A95 and it is important that Transport Scotland provide details on the timescales involved in carrying out work on the narrowest sections of the road.
“It’s quite astounding that local firm McPhersons are having to spend £1000 a week repairing wing mirrors because of damage caused on these narrow sections and it clearly demonstrates the need for this work to be prioritised. This is also an issue that impacts on local people, other sectors such as forestry and tourists.”
The former Cabinet Secretary added that the Scottish Government had a “good track record of investing in Moray’s road infrastructure” with such as the Fochabers by-pass and progress on dualling the A96.
He concluded: “I hope that commitment will carry over to the A95. It is perhaps about time that the UK Government contributed to the upkeep of this key road given the huge revenues sent to Treasury each year from Speyside’s whisky industry.”