Thursday 11 June 2020

Work on the Tay Rail Bridge #dundeewestend

I have received the following update from Network Rail :

"Work is now underway to replace more than 1,200 sleepers located on the iconic Tay Bridge, the longest railway structure in Scotland.

This project, which will be ongoing until September, is designed to extend the life of the track and is being delivered in a way which minimises the disruption for passengers.  It represents an investment of more than £500,000 to improve the resilience and reliability of the line for passengers.

One in three sleepers including baseplates and Pandrol clips – which hold the tracks onto the sleepers – are being replaced and ballast below renewed and re-packed. This will deliver improvements to the stability and extend the lifespan of the track.  

It represents an investment of more than £500,000 to improve the resilience and reliability of the two-mile-long structure and follows on from the £75m restoration of the bridge’s metalwork completed in 2017.

Some of the sleeper’s base plates date back to the early 1960’s and the timber sleepers are now at the end of their natural life having been open to the elements and the impacts of the salty air in this exposed coastal location. 

It equates to circa 60 tonnes of sleepers being installed and an equivalent amount of redundant material and spoil being removed from the bridge over the period of the project.

This approach being taken delivers a balance between maintaining the track to ensure it is fit for the volume of traffic travelling over the bridge while avoiding disruption to passenger services on the busy East Coast Mainline."

I have had some correspondence with Network Rail about this as I am concerned that there is no noise impact overnight for residents who live near the bridge around Roseangle/Magdalen Yard Road.    My colleagues who represent the area on the south side of the bridge on Fife Council (Cllrs Jonny Tepp and Tim Brett) have raised this too.

Residents close to the bridge were sent a letter last month giving further information and I quote this below (removing some dates of work now past) :

"Work will take place each night between the hours of 23:00 and 07:00 on the following dates:

Sunday 21st June 2020 to Wednesday 24th June 2020
Tuesday 30th June 2020 to Thursday 2nd July 2020
Monday 6th July 2020 to Thursday 9th July 2020
Sunday 19th July 2020 to Wednesday 22nd July 2020
Sunday 26th July 2020 to Thursday 30th July 2020
Monday 3rd August 2020 to Thursday 6th August 2020
Monday 24th August 2020 to Thursday 27th August 2020
Sunday 30th August 2020 to Thursday 3rd September 2020

This work will involve track maintenance at the Tay Bridge. Unfortunately, the equipment we use – in this case Rail Road Vehicles, on-track plant and hand power tools – means that some noise is unavoidable, but we will do all we can to minimise it.  We have also asked those working on site to work with consideration for the local community.

We understand that working by your property overnight is far from ideal, but we are legally obliged to work on the railway at times that cause least disruption to trains.  Unfortunately, this means carrying out a lot of our work at weekends or at night.

I hope our work doesn’t disturb you too much but if you have any questions or concerns please call our 24-hr helpline on 03457 11 41 41 or via our website"

If any constituent has any concerns or has noted any noise disturbance, I'd be pleased to speak with them and can be contacted on Dundee 459378 at any time.