BRIDGE strikes caused by overheight lorries cost Network Rail up to £23million a year, with 2017/18 producing the highest number of incidents for five years.
As a result, Network Rail has launched its latest campaign to educate professional HGV drivers about the risks of taking unsuitable routes.
‘Lorries Can’t Limbo’ encourages drivers to “wise up and size up” their vehicle and plan their routes in advance to reduce disruption to rail and road users. Every year there are about 2,000 railway bridge strikes, each costing more than £10,000 in repairs and compensation to train operators.
Compensation payments cost NR up to £13m a year, but the true annual cost is estimated to be up to £23m, once the value of undelivered goods, lost productivity from train delays, and road congestion are taken into account.
Research by NR has revealed 43% of lorry drivers admitted to not checking the height of their vehicle before heading out, with 52% admitting to not taking low bridges into account when planning their journeys.
NR’s Wales and Borders (W&B) route recently experienced eight bridge strikes in just seven days, and since April 2017 there have been 128 bridge strikes across the W&B routes, causing 8,809 minutes of delay to passengers, and costing taxpayers thousands in damages and delays.
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