Nuclear Warhead Convoy report January 2018
The first convoy of 2018 left Burghfield on January 31st with four warhead carriers and the usual support vehicles. It travelled west along the M4 then north on the A34 passed Oxford, M40 and A46 round Leamington Spa and Coventry and then had a break at Gamecock Barracks near Nuneaton. By mid-afternoon it was back on the road traveling up country for an overnight stop in the north of England. On Thu February 1st it continued north and appeared later than previously on the Edinburgh bypass in the early evening and turned off to Glencorse Barracks for a break. Unusually it then took the M8 west passing Livingston and Bathgate and then through the centre of Glasgow before crossing the Erskine Bridge to head up the A82 arriving at Coulport after 10pm.
This convoy set off for the return journey on the morning of Monday 5th February taking the A82 and A811 to Stirling where is stopped at DSG Forthside for a break. It then headed down the M9 and M8 and around the Edinburgh bypass to the A1. After going past Dunbar and Berwick upon Tweed it turned off the A1 at Alnwick to RAF Boulmer for a break before heading south again on the A1 which took it right through Newcastle during the evening rush hour.
After an overnight stop it was again on the road passing Aberford on the A1 mid-morning. It continued right down the A1 past Harrogate and Doncaster before stopping at RAF Wittering for a break and then appears to have continued into heavy traffic around the M25 and M4 getting back to Burghfield by early evening
This convoy again passed through and close to many towns and cities along its route often in heavy traffic.
Nukewatch published a report UNREADY SCOTLAND : the critical gap in our response to the transport of nuclear weapons last year. It is based mainly on a survey of Scottish local authorities on routes taken by the warhead convoys conducted by MSP Mark Ruskell in the autumn of 2016, this report scrutinises the preparedness of the Scottish civil authorities to deal adequately with any incident or accident involving the convoys that transport the weapons. It makes worrying reading.
The report calls on the Scottish Government to conduct a review of the way the councils and others like the emergency services would cope with a serious convoy accident. As they have not yet agreed to that please Sign the Petition and circulate it to others.
If you live in a Scottish Local Authority area on a convoy route write to your council about their response to the survey.
If you live in England a more general letter to your council with some questions can be found here