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The charity making life better by water

Careless driver causes Trust massive repair bill

A hit-and-run car crash in Warwickshire has prompted us to call again for motorists to slow down when crossing 200-year hump-back bridges.

We have been left with a repair bill expected to top £35,000 after a large vehicle slammed into Bridge 119 which crosses the Oxford Canal in Marston Doles, dislodging and damaging 15 metres of masonry. A large part of the historic structure will now need to be rebuilt.

Each year we have to spend over £1million to repair historic canal bridges across the country, after they've been damaged by reckless or careless drivers. In most cases these are hit-and-run accidents, leaving the charity unable to recoup its cost from drivers' insurers, and diverting vital funds away from work to conserve the nation's waterways.

Osi Ivowi, from the Trust, said: “Brick arch bridges are synonymous with our wonderful 18th century canals, so it's heart-breaking to see them damaged in such a careless way. It can be a real headache to do the repairs, which cost huge amounts and cause delays for people when the road and the canal have to be closed.

Please slow down

“If motorists just slowed down a bit and took more care then they would stop this needless destruction of our heritage. It really isn't rocket science – if you see a hump-back bridge sign then slow down. This is particularly important for drivers of heavy goods vehicles and farm tractors with trailers where even a slight nudge can do significant damage. You will save yourself and us a great deal of expense and aggravation.”

If anyone has any further information on this incident please contact us on 03030 404040 or email [email protected]

Last Edited: 24 March 2015

photo of a location on the canals
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