Speedy bridge removal minimises motorway disruption, UK
In less than 12 hours ALE completed the removal of a section of a bridge, weighing 150t, over a busy motorway network in the UK.
The motorway was partially closed overnight and, as it is one of the UK’s busiest roads, it was crucial that the operation was completed on schedule to avoid major disruptions. The client selected ALE for the removal based on their proven track record of swift bridge operations.
ALE engaged 12 axle lines of SPMT in a configuration of 2 x 2 file 6. Once they were in position beneath the bridge, the hydraulic stroke of the SPMTs was used to free the central section from the bearings of the piers on either side.
Eight 100t capacity climbing jacks were utilised to provide clearance between the remaining piers and the central bridge section. The section was then removed and transported to a compound, where it was jacked-down so it could be demolished.
The use of this method and equipment enabled the bridge to be removed from the bearings without having to cut the bridge free. As ALE were able to remove the entire section at once, this saved considerable time and minimised the disruption to the road network.
The bridge removal is part of the extension of the M6’s ‘smart motorway’, which will increase capacity through variable speed limits and the opening of the hard shoulder at busy times. It will also provide the opportunity for smoother traffic flow and fewer traffic collisions.