Ely no longer has ‘Britain’s most bashed bridge’ - despite being struck 19 times in the last year
- Credit: Archant
Stuntney Road bridge in Ely has lost its 2018 title of ‘Britain’s most bashed bridge’ - despite being struck 19 times in the last year.
According to Network Rail’s countdown of last year’s 20 most struck bridges, it is now the fourth most bashed bridge in the country.
The bridge at Stonea Road in Stonea, meanwhile, suffered 13 strikes in the last year, meaning it has slipped down from second place in 2018 to ninth.
The rail company say this is likely because the bridge has been temporarily closed since October 2019, when a vehicle hit it causing significant damage.
Network Rail added that almost half of the top 10 is in the Anglia region, including Abbey Farm in Thetford, which came in at number five with 16 strikes, while Coddenham Road in Needham Market, Suffolk, came in at number 10 with 11 strikes in the last year.
The most struck bridge was at Watling Street Hinckley, Leicestershire, suffering 25 strikes in the last year.
“In general, figures show railway bridges are struck five times every day on average across Britain, causing almost half a million minutes of delays for rail passengers,” said a Network Rail spokesman.
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“Though there has been a 11 per cent decrease in incidents in the last financial year (April 1 2019 - March 31 2020), bridge strikes remain a dangerous and costly concern.”
Ellie Burrows, Network Rail’s route director for Anglia, added: “There is no excuse to not know the height of your vehicle before starting your journey.
“As well as putting lives in danger on both road and rail and causing lengthy delays for passengers and road users, drivers who chance it at bridges are at risk of leaving their employers with a hefty bill for repairs and train delay costs, along with a strong threat to their own operator licence.”
Sir Peter Hendy CBE, chair of Network Rail said: “We’ve done a lot of work with partners across the industry in recent years to tackle bridge strikes, and whilst it’s encouraging to see our work is paying off with numbers now on the decline, there’s a lot more to be done to cut the unnecessary delays, costs and safety risks they pose.”
Top ten most struck railway bridges in Britain 2019/20:
1. Watling Street Hinckley, Leicestershire - 25 strikes
2. Bromford Road Dudley, West Midlands - 24 strikes
3. St John’s Street Lichfield, Staffordshire - 23 strikes
4. Stuntney Road Ely, Cambridgeshire - 19 strikes
5. Abbey Farm Thetford, Norfolk - 16 strikes
6. Thurlow Park Road Tulse Hill, London - 14 strikes
7. Carlisle Road Cleland, North Lanarkshire - 13 strikes
8. Harlaxton Road Grantham, Lincolnshire - 13 strikes
9. Stonea Road Stonea, Cambridgeshire - 13 strikes
10. Coddenham Road Needham Market, Suffolk - 11 strikes