Dozy drivers cost canal and rivers trust £1m a year
Dozy drivers cost canal trusts £1 million a year on repairs to hump-back bridges, with a strike a week on the network.
The Canal & River Trust says the Kennet & Avon canal in Wiltshire and Bath is the worst affected, with some bridges hit just months after being repaired.
One bridge in Pewsey, Wiltshire, was damaged in May – the second time in two years.
And the Horton road bridge near Devizes was struck this month, the most recent of several strikes over the years.
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The problem is almost all drivers whose cars bounce off the sides of the bridges drive off, leaving the Trust unable to reclaim their costs for the damage. On a canal in the midlands, the Trust is installing a CCTV camera on one particularly vulnerable hump-back bridge.
Nigel Crowe, the Canal & River Trust’s head of heritage, said cameras could soon be on the Kennet and Avon. “We’ve taken the unusual steps to install the sensor to this particular bridge as it has been repeatedly hit over the last few years.” If it is a success, we’ll look to install similar sensors to other hump-back accident hot spots.
“We are also working with the local authorities to improve signage and road markings, but frankly, if motorists just slowed down a bit and took more care and attention then they would stop this daily vandalism of our heritage. It really isn’t rocket science – if you see a hump-back bridge sign then slow down and you will save yourself and us a great deal of expense and aggravation,” he added.