Poole's Twin Sails bridge reopens temporarily

Image source, Borough of Poole
Image caption,
The Twin Sails Bridge has been closed a number of times since it was completed in 2012

Poole's troubled Twin Sails bridge, which has been closed for more than a month because of a fault, has reopened to vehicles temporarily.

The lifting bridge, which links Poole with Hamworthy, has been closed since 16 November when it began making a grating noise while being raised.

Engineers need to remove a half-tonne pin from the mechanism before they can identify the problem.

The bridge has reopened but is lifting less frequently and at half speed.

The noise developed on the Hamworthy side of the bridge and engineers had intended to remove the pin using a hydraulic jack.

Borough of Poole Council said a new method of removing the pin had now been identified and a specialist company was scheduled to do the work in late January.

In the meantime, it said the lifting leaf would operate on a single cylinder.

Engineering manager Lynne Wait said: "We have gone through a thorough process of eliminating potential causes of the fault and are confident that the renewed lifts will not cause further damage to the bridge."

The £37m Twin Sails Bridge opened in 2012 and was initially beset with defects including sections of the road falling off as it was raised.

The bridge and nearby Poole Bridge enable drivers to avoid a six-mile detour while allowing boats to pass between Holes Bay and Poole Bay.

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