‘Critical faults’ on Hammersmith Bridge lead to seven bus services being banned from crossing
Hammersmith and Fulham Council have closed London’s Hammersmith Bridge indefinitely, after safety checks found that it had many ‘critical faults’.
First constructed in 1824, the bridge was waiting to undergo refurbishment, however due to Government budget cuts TFL has been unable to make the repairs.
Hammersmith and Fulham Council stated that the 123-year-old bridge’s structure was never designed for modern traffic and high volumes of heavy vehicles such as buses.
Buses were previously ordered by the council with a strict rule of only allowing one bus on the bridge at a time, but in 2016 Transport for London removed their bridge wardens, which were ensuring that this rule was enforced, leading to a breech of the agreement.
In a statement, Councillor Wesley Harcourt, who is also Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport Residents’ Services, explained that “we made it clear that we would be left with no other option than to close the bridge to buses if they did not comply.”
However, Hammersmith & Fulham council found that “the bridge contains critical faults” during their weekly safety checks so they have “no choice” but to shut it down.
Commuters that rely on public transport to cross the bridge will need to find an alternative way. Pedestrians and cyclists are still able to cross the bridge from Barnes to Hammersmith, but seven buses services have been suspended.