Engineers considering temporary fix to ease delays on cracked M62 Ouse Bridge

Ouse Bridge
Ouse Bridge Credit: ITV News

Engineers carrying out emergency repairs to a major bridge on the M62 in East Yorkshire are considering a temporary measure to reduce congestion.

There have been major delays around the Ouse Bridge since Tuesday, 24 May, when the eastbound carriageway between junctions 36 for Goole and 37 for Howden was closed completely.

It came after workers who were already carrying out repairs following the discovery of cracks on the bridge found damage to a second joint.

A contra-flow system that was already in place to manage traffic after the eastbound carriageway was reduced to two lanes is now the only way to cross the bridge, with diversions for drivers travelling east.

It is not known when the eastbound side will reopen.

Brigg and Goole MP, Andrew Percy, said he was "pretty peeved off" at the situation.

"I'm pretty annoyed that we have found ourselves back in this position," he said. "It's very disruptive, which is why I'm putting maximum pressure on the highways agency to get this fixed and sorted as soon as possible."

National Highways said it was now looking at whether the hard shoulder could be opened up to reduce the ongoing delays and "frustration" for drivers.

'Stringent safety criteria'

Phil Jepps, National Highway's programme delivery manager, said: "This presents some challenges because the hard shoulder is narrow and we also need to meet stringent safety criteria on the use of contraflows such as having sufficient space for barriers to divide the east and westbound traffic.

"If we consider this option to be safe and are able to implement this change, we will do so, although we would have to operate the contraflow at a significantly lower speed than it is running now."

Currently, drivers are not able to leave the M62 at junction 37, instead vehicles are being diverted to junction 38 to turn round, and return on the westbound carriageway.

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