Broadway bridge struck 14 times in four years

THE Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway is to spend £90,000 on measures to protect its accident-prone Broadway bridge from collisions, amidst fears that it is only a matter of time before someone is killed.

An old saying runs that lightning never strikes twice. Sadly, that is not true for lorries and the bridge which carried the line’s new northern extension into Broadway station.

A collision with the B4632 Station Road/Evesham Road bridge on May 1 was the 14th since it was overhauled in 2014 – an average of one every three months, with a total cost of £72,000 for bridge repairs.

WR 4-6-0 No. 7820 Dinmore Manor crosses the bridge as it approaches Broadway station, a view taken from long straight Evesham Road looking towards the village and highlighting plenty of visibility of the low bridge sign. IAN CROWDER

The 115-year-old bridge with its 14ft 3in-high span was substantially repaired at a cost of nearly £250,000 in 2014 in advance of tracks being laid again over it.

In the latest incident on May 1, a flatbed truck carrying machinery struck the bridge at speed, leading to the load falling off the truck. The road was closed for several hours to recover the severely damaged equipment from the road.

The driver admitted to railway officials and the police that he did not know the height of his load, said a railway spokesman.

G/WR bridge engineer, John Balderstone said: “These bridge strikes pose a serious threat not only to the railway, but to other road users.

“Every time there is a collision, it necessitates a close inspection of the bridge, delaying train services, to ensure that it is safe for trains to cross.

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