Passengers stranded outside Plymouth station after lorry crash
Hundreds of rail passengers have been left stranded after a lorry damaging a train bridge in Plymouth caused huge delays and cancellations – and rail replacement busses are not showing up. Just before 3.30pm today (August 30), a Mercedes lorry drove under a rail bridge in Mannamead. It was too bit for the gap, and wedged itself.
And, according to local reports, it is still stuck. Read: Trains stopped after lorry becomes stuck under bridge in Plymouth – live updates Not only has this blocked the surrounding roads – but it appears to have damaged the brickwork on the roof of the tunnel.
This damage has led to worries that the railway above it is not safe – delaying and cancelling trains between Plymouth and Totnes.
Passengers stranded at Plymouth after a lorry’s collision with a railway bridge has caused chaos on the lines (Image: Ian Carroll)
Earlier reports stated that trains would be delayed until 7pm. GWR and Cross Country then amended warnings to state the railways could be shut for the rest of the day. Rail replacement busses have not arrived, with Cross Country reporting it could not find any – and GWR only “extremely limited” numbers.
A passenger at Plymouth station videoed a huge crowd of people chasing after a bus they believed to be a service to Exeter. The traveller, Konstantin Leonenko, said: “Total chaos in Plymouth as crowds are chasing what might be a bus replacement service to Exeter. Zero information provided by railway staff.
“They are trying to put together something resembling a queuing system, but three hours too late at the point when all the connecting trains from Exeter have pretty much left.” Mr Leonenko added that the bus drove off, however, leaving the passengers to remain stranded. Rail services have advised people to avoid travelling between Plymouth and Totnes for the foreseeable future.
GWR said: “There is an extremely limited road replacement service between Exeter and Plymouth for those already travelling. “If you haven’t already started your journey please do not travel. “More updates to follow.”
The lorry has become wedged under the bridge (Image: Tracy Pengelly)
Described as an “epic fail” by one eyewitness, the lorry remains wedged under the bridge.
The collision with the bridge has caused some concerns of the safety of the rail above it. Trains between Plymouth and Totness, as a result, have been suspended, delayed or cancelled until the end of the day. The eyewitness added: “How could he not know the size of his brand new Mercedes lorry?”
The latest update from traffic monitoring site Inrix reads: “Ashford Hill blocked, slow traffic due to bridge struck by vehicle around Holkham Lane. “A lorry is stuck underneath the bridge.” Alternative travel advice
An extremely limited rail replacement bus service is in place between Plymouth and Exeter St Davids. CrossCountry You may use your ticket on Great Western Railway via any reasonable route.
Great Western Railway
You may use your ticket on the following operators services:
- South Western Railway between London Waterloo and Exeter St Davids
- CrossCountry via any reasonable route
- First Kernow on routes T2, U1, U2, T1, 87, and 91
For live coverage of this incident, go here to our live blog.
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