At the risk of Ferryman accusing me of …

Comment posted Overnight closures for Connel Bridge for repairs to damage caused by high truck by Robert Wakeham.

At the risk of Ferryman accusing me of not being a regular user of the Connel Bridge (I plead guilty) I’d like to know why – to the best of my knowledge – there’s no form of overhead warning barrier that triggers stop lights if an overheight vehicle approaches the bridge? This type of ‘fail-safe’ precaution is common enough in some European countries – for example, at level crossings where there’s an overhead electric line.
In this country any construction site involving traffic under low power lines will be legally required to have ‘goalposts’, and it leaves me wondering if the trunk road authority is asleep – or maybe their managing agents get a percentage of the cost of repairing the likes of Connel Bridge? I just can’t believe that the cost of repairs – and disruption – is outweighed by the cost of fitting effective safety warnings.

Robert Wakeham also commented

  • In that case perhaps a reliable stop light system with flashing ‘overheight’ warning would be the obvious failsafe system – the flashing speed signs at the southern entrance to Inveraray and on Great Western Road near Drumchapel are very noticeable.
  • What I’ve seen in some places is a hefty steel pipe suspended from cables over the road – no electrical system to go wrong, but a driver would have to be deaf or drunk not to be aware of a ‘hit’. (having said that, I wonder what was the driver’s excuse at Connel if – as it would appear – he ploughed on for some distance after hitting the first girder?)

Recent comments by Robert Wakeham

  • A83 closed with coach off on shores of Loch Restil
    It’s now roughly nine hours since the coach went right off the road, and it’s still closed according to the Traffic Scotland website, but surely there’s been enough time for the Police accident investigation of the road, and for recovery of the coach. I wonder how much longer it’s going to take.
  • A83 closed with coach off on shores of Loch Restil
    Probably a similar mindset to that of the drivers on the A83 between Ardrishaig and Tarbert who reckon they can see around corners.
  • Finlaggan finesses its whisky carryings with an international safety award
    First time that I’ve seen people wearing protective gloves to handle a whisky bottle – presumably the latest health & safety precaution.
  • A83 closed with coach off on shores of Loch Restil
    There are crosswind warning signs at that particular spot, and I’ve seen trucks that have been blown off here, so I wonder if the latest incident might concentrate minds within Transport Scotland to review the possible provision of a few hundred metres of windshield barrier on the opposite side of the road, as used on big bridges.
  • A83 closed with coach off on shores of Loch Restil
    I’d like to think that Euan knew what he was talking about, but if you look at photos of this company’s coaches on Google Images it’s clearly a door – a standard feature of many vehicles, at the foot of the stairs to the mid-coach loo.
    Incidentally, there’s a photo & video of the other side of the coach on the BBC website, and it’s intact except for the windows. The BBC describe it as having overturned, rolled, but if it did – rather than just plough down the slope – it speaks very well for the structural integrity of the body, which is still remarkably clean.

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6 Responses to At the risk of Ferryman accusing me of …

  1. At the risk of Ferryman accusing me of not being a regular user of the Connel Bridge (I plead guilty) I’d like to know why – to the best of my knowledge – there’s no form of overhead warning barrier that triggers stop lights if an overheight vehicle approaches the bridge? This type of ‘fail-safe’ precaution is common enough in some European countries – for example, at level crossings where there’s an overhead electric line.
    In this country any construction site involving traffic under low power lines will be legally required to have ‘goalposts’, and it leaves me wondering if the trunk road authority is asleep – or maybe their managing agents get a percentage of the cost of repairing the likes of Connel Bridge? I just can’t believe that the cost of repairs – and disruption – is outweighed by the cost of fitting effective safety warnings.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • What I’ve seen in some places is a hefty steel pipe suspended from cables over the road – no electrical system to go wrong, but a driver would have to be deaf or drunk not to be aware of a ‘hit’. (having said that, I wonder what was the driver’s excuse at Connel if – as it would appear – he ploughed on for some distance after hitting the first girder?)

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • There is also a physical bar to warn drivers but with the lorries stereo on full you might not notice it even if you do hit it. Drivers are supposed to know what the height of their vehicles are and read the signs.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • In that case perhaps a reliable stop light system with flashing ‘overheight’ warning would be the obvious failsafe system – the flashing speed signs at the southern entrance to Inveraray and on Great Western Road near Drumchapel are very noticeable.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • As linnhe says, there is a recently-installed system of vehicle height sensors linked to NADIX-type display boards/flashing lights, but there have been some ‘teething troubles’ with these.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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