Relief as A47 Bascule Bridge reopens following ‘fault’

The A47 Bascule Bridge in Lowestoft was stuck in the upright position and closed in both directions

The A47 Bascule Bridge in Lowestoft was stuck in the upright position and closed in both directions following a “technical fault”. Picture: Lowestoft Central - Credit: Archant

Work to repair the A47 Bascule Bridge in Lowestoft following a 'technical fault' has been completed and it has opened once more to traffic.

A fault with the bridge hydraulics meant Highways England engineers were unable to lower the bridge, as it remained closed all of Thursday morning and for the early afternoon.

A fault with the Bascule bridge in Lowestoft meant it could not be lowered.Highways England engineer

A fault with the Bascule bridge in Lowestoft meant it could not be lowered.Highways England engineers are working at the scene on the bridge hydraulics, in order to lower the bridge and reopen the road. Pictures: Lowestoft Central - Credit: Archant

Highways officials Tweeted at 2.45pm: "Bascule Bridge - Update - Work has now successfully been completed and the bridge has re-opened.

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"Thank you for your patience."

A fault with the Bascule bridge in Lowestoft meant it could not be lowered.Highways England engineer

A fault with the Bascule bridge in Lowestoft meant it could not be lowered.Highways England engineers are working at the scene on the bridge hydraulics, in order to lower the bridge and reopen the road. Pictures: Lowestoft Central - Credit: Archant

Engineers had been on site investigating the fault since early on Thursday morning, with works having been complicated with the bridge being locked in the upright position.


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A free bus service and diversion route was in place throughout Thursday.

The bridge was due to reopen at 6am on Thursday after the latest overnight closure for maintenance works.

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But after traffic chaos was reported across Lowestoft on the early morning commutes to work and school runs, frustrated motorists were left facing long traffic tailbacks.

One motorist said traffic was "gridlocked" on the roads, and another driver said that queues of vehicles were backed up throughout Lowestoft and Oulton Broad.

Lowestoft Police urged motorists to "take an alternative route" as tailbacks were reported across town.

A spokesman for First Eastern Counties Buses said they expected that buses in the Beccles and Norwich areas "will be particularly affected" during the evening rush hour as "buses are not all in the right place to do their journeys from Lowestoft to Norwich."

The spokesman said: "We will do our best to get people home within a reasonable timescale.

"Thank you for your patience."

It comes as Highways England have been carrying out 20 nights of maintenance works to the bridge, as a series of overnight works have been taking place between 8pm and 6am with the work scheduled to finish on November 24.

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