Lorry’s roof ripped off by low bridge
A HGV driver confused by his sat nav’s misleading directions crashed into the infamous Wootton Bassett Road bridge, ripping off the lorry’s 16ft roof yesterday afternoon.
The Mr Kipling truck was due to deliver a shipment of cakes to supermarket Iceland but the driver missed a left turn before the Running Horse Bridge.
By the time he realised his mistake he had already begun making his way under the bridge.
While the front of the arched roof was below the 14.9ft height restriction, the 16ft middle section hit the structure and the entire fibreglass and polystyrene top was torn off.
The debris spilled on to the road but was swiftly picked up and moved aside by the driver.
The incident happened at 3.25pm. Police arrived at the scene 15 minutes later. No one was injured.
The driver, who asked not be named, was travelling from Leicester and following his sat nav’s instructions when he hit the low railway bridge.
“I’m new here,” he said. “I don’t know the area at all. My sat nav said there was a roundabout or an island. It confused me because there was no roundabout.
“By the time I got to the bridge it was too late. The bridge is not damaged. It gave everybody a chance to have a laugh.”
He said: “It was just an easy mistake. I should have turned left but I went straight on.
“The roof goes up, at the top it’s 16 ft but the bridge is only 14.9 ft.
“Luckily there was nobody behind me.”
He parked the lorry at the bridge entrance and moved the remains of the roof away from the road.
Norm Newton, who works at Interlink Express, off Wootton Bassett Road, saw the accident.
“I just heard a big bang when I was walking down the street,” he said. “There are enough lights flashing to tell them the bridge is not high enough.
“He got the front bit but he couldn’t get the rest through.”
The bridge is a notorious lorry crash spot. Its black and yellow warning beam bears the marks of many previous accidents.
In January, a 32-tonne truck got wedged under the bridge. The driver miscalculated the height but claimed the warning sign failed to work.