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Rail bridge arrives during Christmas break

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A new steel composite rail bridge over the A46 Newark to Widmerpool Improvement Scheme was successfully slid into position during the recent festive break.

The rail line crosses the 28km road scheme at its centre point, so the operation was critical to the outcome of the entire project. During an 83 hour rail possession, beginning on Christmas Eve, an existing railway embankment was excavated, a 1,300t bridge was moved into place using two multi-wheeled hydraulic platforms and the track and signalling were replaced.

The 60m-long bridge was fabricated, supplied and erected by Mabey Bridge. Steel sections were brought to site in 20m-long lengths, and assembled – along with the cross members – on temporary trestles and bearings.

Once assembled, main contractor Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering installed the bridge’s concrete deck. The entire structure was then transported the 40m from its assembly point to its final position during the rail possession.

The line was handed back three hours before the end of the allotted time.

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