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You can bet students getting their HGV training in Staffordshire are being reminded about the need to pay attention to height limits after a lorry crashed into the Abbey Hulton Bridge in Stoke-on-Trent. Traffic was stopped for quite a while due to the lorry becoming stuck underneath the bridge that carries a disused rail line. Engineers were called in to assess the damage to the bridge.

According to This Is Staffordshire, events like this are nothing new in the area. Local residents say lorries run into problems under the bridge quite frequently and have to reverse themselves in order to get out. One resident told the newspaper he thought the problem was being caused by drivers unfamiliar with the area who trust their satnav directions.

Whether or not that is true, such crashes still shouldn’t occur. Part of a good HGV training course deals with trailer and bridge height issues for this very reason. If a driver approaches a bridge and it even appears to be too low, he should not continue. Crashing into a low bridge should not happen, let alone getting a lorry stuck underneath.

Making matters worse is the fact that there is a sign posted at the approach of the bridge to warn drivers of height restrictions. Local residents claim drivers routinely ignore the sign in the hopes they can squeeze underneath. Just days earlier, another driver was allegedly planning to try to make it but only stopped when a cyclist flagged him down and told him not to.

In this case, there were no serious injuries or damage reported. However, the heavily travelled commuter route was shut down for more than eight hours while the truck was freed and the damage was assessed. Had emergency vehicles needed to get through they would have had to be diverted around the area.

Follow the Training

Height restrictions are part of general highway safety and something we instruct our students in at the HGV Training Centre. It’s important drivers understand the risks of not heeding bridge signs; risks that can damage lorries, public property, and roadways. In some cases, even lives are at risk.

It should be noted that the incident in Staffordshire is not typical of the nation’s HGV drivers. The vast majority of drivers are safe and conscientious at all times. Furthermore, most go out of their way to be cautious in situations they are unsure of. It is through the dedication and high standards of the nation’s drivers that the haulage and freight transport industries remains relatively safe.

The HGV Training Centre is ready to help you embark on a new career as an HGV driver. We offer a range of classes for individual drivers and fleet managers in need of training assistance. We will help you every step of the way including completing your paperwork, learning the information you need to know, and getting you ready to pass your tests. If you are ready, get in touch with us today.


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