East Riding of Yorkshire Council has announced that essential work to strengthen the post-tensioned bridge over the Dutch River at Rawcliffe Bridge have been extended until 9 June, 2020, meaning that the bridge will remain closed until that date.
The ongoing works are to strengthen the bridge and remove the previous weight restriction, and have meant that the bridge has been closed to all traffic since June last year. It had been hoped to reopen the bridge in late March.
The works have revealed corrosion to the strands in the bridge which are vital to the future safety of the structure. In order to prevent future corrosion, it has been decided to pump a corrosion inhibitor into the strands during the current works, rather than having to close the bridge again in the future. This will reduce the risk of future weight limits and closures.
When the bridge does reopen, it will be to all vehicles, travelling in single file under a traffic light priority system.
For reasons of public safety, and to allow the work to take place in a safe and efficient manner, it remains necessary to close the bridge to all traffic for the duration of the work. However, provision has been made for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the bridge safely. A signed diversion route remains in place for all traffic whilst the works are being carried out.
The work is being carried out by the council's contractor, PBS Construction (North East) Ltd, a local civil engineering contractor.
Principal engineer, Phil Smith, explained : "We are strengthening the sub structure of the bridge, re-waterproofing and resurfacing the bridge deck, re-tensioning the vehicle restraint system, and carrying out repairs to the parapets, as well as installing permanent traffic lights.
"We apologise for the extension to the closure period for the bridge, and for the continued inconvenience this will cause. However, by extending the closure period, we can carry out further significant work which should safeguard the future of the bridge for a much longer period."
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