Management of Bridge Strikes- Good Practice Guide for Bridge Strike Nominees
|Publication Date:||1 June 2008|
Bridge strikes continue to be a problem for both Railway and Highway Engineers. Despite various attempts to reduce the number of incidents and their severity, the annual number of reported incidents exceeds 2000 and continues to increase.
Bridge strikes cause damage to the railway infrastructure and delays which affect train operating companies, their passengers, freight operating companies and their customers. The annual cost of bridge strikes to Network Rail for delays, examination and repairs to damaged bridges is £11 million.
Although many bridge strike incidents cause little or no damage to the railway infrastructure, some may cause serious damage with the potential to cause a major incident, and therefore need special care or considerable effort on site to restore normal working.
All bridge strikes have the potential to cause significant delay to train operations. Therefore Bridge Strike Nominees must be able to respond promptly, and restore normal working as soon as possible whilst ensuring that safety is maintained.
This guide has been designed for use by all railway staff involved with the response on site as Bridge Strike Nominees and who examine bridges following reported bridge strike incidents. The main aim of this guide is (a) to enable operational safety to be maintained whilst minimising delay to trains, (b) to communicate current practice and (c) to be a supplement to Bridge Strike Nominee training. A flow chart illustrating the process to be followed when responding to a bridge strike is shown in Section 2.
The mandatory requirements for the examination of a bridge following a bridge strike can be found in Network Rail Standard NR/L3/CIV/076: Management of the Risk of Bridge Strikes from Road Vehicles and Waterborne Vessels. Further details regarding the management of Bridge Strikes can be found in Network Rail Guidance Note NR/GN/CIV/202: Management of Risk of Bridge Strikes. The procedure to be followed in reporting a Bridge Strike can be found in Network Rail Standard NR/L3/CIV/176: Management of Reports on Bridge Strikes.
Operating instructions and signal box special instructions, for bridges which have been assessed for robustness against bridge strike, may be issued to authorise trains to run prior to an examination. Clear communication and up-to-date knowledge of the current situation regarding train movements is essential to respond safely and promptly to reported bridge strike incidents.
This issue supersedes NR/GN/CIV/201 Issue 3 dated April 2006, copies of which should be thrown away. The most significant changes in this issue are:
• allowance for train movements under an overline line bridge in accordance with General Signalling Instructions 17.2 and 20
• to the damage limits to permit Bridge Strike Nominees to permit train movements with increased damage to the bridge
• clarification of damage limits for metallic, concrete and timber parapets to bridges over the railway, and
• inclusion of guidance for Bridge Strike Nominees to permit train movements over bridges with metallic columns