IT’S not the first time a truck has been stuck under the viaduct, and business owners say it certainly won’t be the last.
The sound of metal scraping bridge could be heard at 8am on Tuesday, as yet another truckie played a game of chance with the 3.9 metre viaduct.
Car dealer John Cannon said council needs to deal with the problem.
“Does somebody have to die before things get done in this town?” he said.
“The bridge is obsolete, trains don’t run on it anymore and it’s not listed on the Navman [GPS] so truck drivers don’t know it’s there.
“We call this a bloody industrial area and trucks can’t even get under it.”
The viaduct is void of a low clearance sign on one side and a metal pole hangs limp off the side.
Does somebody have to die before things get done in this town?- John Cannon
New England District police Inspector Roger Best counted a number of incidents, including one in November, where a driver misjudged the height of the bridge.
“Police records confirm as far back as 2003 trucks getting stuck under the viaduct,” he said.
Edwards Coaches operations manager James Cross said they were unable to invest in double-decker buses because of the risk it would pose.
“It can’t be underestimated the seriousness, it’s a dangerous waste of space – they either need to invest in it and fix it for all vehicles or remove it,” he said.
“If we’re to progress and become a successful city, we can’t have these obstacles – it’s a pathetic situation.
“There’s no way we could go higher because of the human factor, if someone is tired and forgets you lose the top of the vehicle.”
John Holland is responsible for the bridge and the road belongs to Armidale Regional Council.
The missing sign has been reported to John Holland and an inspector will replace it.
“Council staff have been in contact with John Holland and offered a collaborative approach to reviewing the future of the bridge structure."
The Express contacted John Holland on behalf of Transport NSW for comment but did not receive one before this article went to press.