Lorry causes chaos in Romsey after Greatbridge Road incident

ROMSEY residents are calling for action to be taken as soon as possible after a lorry became stuck under a railway bridge. Residents said dozens of lorries have got stuck under the bridge in Greatbridge Road over the past 10 years. But the town was brought to a standstill once again yesterday after a lorry struck the bridge shortly after noon.

The road was closed in both directions due to the collision and all railway lines between Salisbury and Romsey were blocked. Firefighters from Romsey, Redbridge, Totton and Eastleigh were also called to the scene. A spokesman for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “Nobody was trapped that needed treatment.

We were there to make the scene safe and left at 12.50pm.” Motorists were left queueing in their cars while workers from RD Avery recovered the vehicle. The crash is the latest in a longstanding saga of lorries ploughing into the railway bridge.

Following the latest incident Romsey resident Andrew Parter said: “It happens every few months. It is very annoying and it is a regular occurrence here. “The kids walk up and down this road to school- it’s an accident waiting to happen.”

Romsey MP Caroline Nokes said residents “are fed up” with these incidents and town bosses have now vowed to look into measures that could be taken to stop them from happening again. Mark Cooper, county councillor for Romsey, said: “It really is time to come up with a solution because that happens quite frequently, it costs us money having to put up with the delays and chaos that these incidents cause. If lorry owners would be prosecuted for doing this they maybe would be a little more conscious.”

Cllr Cooper said that a suspended chain across the road from one end of the bridge to the other would be another solution so that if lorries do hit the top of the bridge drivers would be alerted by the noise and stop before getting stuck. “The county council should be taking some action and the police need to charge drivers with dangerous driving. We need to find some other method to enforce the situation,”he said.

And added: “I will definitively talk to the director of the transport service at the county council to see what we can do.” Cllr Dorothy Baverstock, mayor of Romsey, has also vowed to discuss the issue with town bosses at the next council meeting at the Town Hall. “It’s down to the lorry drivers.

The problem is that lorry drivers don’t seem to notice there are signs saying the height of the bridge and then they get stuck. I presume they don’t really know the height of their lorries,”she added. As previously reported, a few years ago residents were demanding action after another lorry got stuck under the bridge.

Back then they said they had witnessed at least 18 such incidents at the spot over the past ten years. Now Simon Higgins, Road Haulage Association (RHA) manager for Hampshire, said the association is working with the Department for Transport to try to stop lorry drivers from hitting bridges. “Hitting bridges is bad for the industry, the people who hit the bridge and residents.

We are trying to look at reasons why bridges are hit and things that lorry companies can do about it, but the main reason is drivers’ education. They should be aware of the height of their lorries,” he added. Caroline Nokes, MP for Romsey and Southampton North, said: “I have been contacted by a number of constituents who are frankly fed up with sheer regularity of lorries getting stuck under the Greatbridge Road bridge.

“There are clear warning signals – if drivers are unable to see bright flashing lights then I worry about their ability to safely drive their vehicle.

“I very much hope companies take action against employees who drive so negligently.”

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