Network Rail has reopened the West Coast main line through the Stafford area after more than 24 hours of disruption caused by a lorry hitting a bridge.
The bridge, which carries Worston Lane over the busy railway north of Stafford, was badly damaged when a lorry struck it at 10:00 on Thursday 14 February 2019, dislodging brickwork and leaving it hanging over the railway tracks below.
One line was closed immediately and a temporary speed restriction imposed on the other three. Work took place throughout the night to carry out repairs and make the bridge safe, with the bridge reopening just before 3pm on 15 February.
Martin Colmey, Network Rail’s operations manager, said: “We worked through the night to make the bridge safe so trains could continue to run. We made ongoing repairs today so we could fully reopen as quickly as possible without any speed restrictions.
“The bridge did what it was designed to do and prevented a potential major incident of a lorry crashing onto the railway. However, it is hugely frustrating as the incident was entirely avoidable. Thousands of passengers have been disrupted as a result of this driver not driving responsibly or carefully.”
The driver failed to stop at the scene and is being sought by police.