Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

'Sleepless nights' complaint over West Calder bridge replacement

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Media captionDavid McInnes posted a video of the work taking place over his back garden wall

A homeowner has complained of months of sleepless nights because of works to replace a railway bridge in West Lothian.

David McInnes, 61, whose house on Harburn Lane, West Calder, backs onto the railway line, said he had suffered noise disturbance since August.

He said the works, which are not due to finish until April, shake his house and cause high noise levels at night.

Network Rail said Mr McInnes was the only local resident who had complained.

The bridge replacement is part of ongoing works to electrify the Shotts line between Edinburgh and Glasgow Central.

Image copyright Other
Image caption David McInnes said the noise had been getting gradually worse since last summer

Mr McInnes, who is a retired IT services manager for Forth Ports, told BBC Scotland that the noise had been getting gradually worse since last summer.

He said: "I thought it was the end of the world on Friday night, the noise and vibrations were so bad. We couldn't get any sleep all night and it carried on all the next day too.

"What good is it to put a note through the door saying there is going to be high levels of noise? Are we to pay for a hotel now until April?

"It is outrageous and I'm very angry about this.

"Surely it would be better to carry out the work during the day and inconvenience rail services than to cause all the locals in the area months and months of sleepless nights?"

Image copyright David McInnes
Image caption Machinery being used beside Mr McInnes garden during the night

Network Rail said it had notified 1,200 properties that they would be affected by the work and Mr McInnes' complaint was the only one it had received.

A spokesman said: "The work we have been carrying out at West Calder is vital to replace a life-expired road bridge over the railway.

"We try to minimise the disruption our works cause to nearby residents, but short-term night-time working is unavoidable when removing a structure such as a bridge over the railway.

"We have been in regular communication with locals residents about this project, including Mr McInnes, to keep them informed about our project and to try to address any concerns they may have.

"We are also required under the terms of our license to run the railway delivery works in a way that minimises disruption to train services. "

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