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M48 Severn Bridge set for weekend closure

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The M48 Severn Bridge will be closed to traffic this weekend to allow for two high-level cable inspection gantries to be moved.

The bridge will be closed from 7pm on Friday, 30 September to 6am on Monday, 3 October – weather conditions depending – to enable the moving of an inspection gantry from the westbound to eastbound carriageway.

Chris Pope, Project Manager for National Highways, said: “The inspections are vital to allow us to understand the current condition of the suspension cables and confirm that the measures that we implemented over the last 15 years have been effective in ensuring the long-term viability of the bridge and the safety of its users.

“We have been working in conjunction with our contractor Amey and the weekend closures have been planned to avoid any major events both sides of the bridge.

“Agreed diversion routes are in place and we are not envisaging a major impact on our road users.”

So far, the team have completed the inspection and repair work at two of the four high-level sites using the cable inspection gantries and are continuing work from scaffolding at another two lower-level locations.

The team have also inspected over 360 metres of cable to date and repaired 30 broken wires.

Inspections at another four sites and the complete testing of wire samples at a specialist laboratory still remain, although the initial finding so far are in line with what the team had expected.

To carry out these cable inspections and to ensure the safety of both the public and workforce, long-term lane closures will remain in place after this weekend’s full closure.  Vehicles over 2.9 metres wide remain prohibited from using the M48 Severn Bridge during this work. 

For the duration of the weekend closure, diversion routes will be in place across the M4 Second Severn Crossing. The footway and cycle path next to the eastbound carriageway will remain open during the closure.

Chris added: “We understand this work may cause some inconvenience and disruption, but we are making every effort to ensure the impact on drivers is kept to a minimum.

“This will help us to keep the bridge safe to use for the long-term future.”

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