Ice likely to cause more Queensferry Crossing Closures

Transport Scotland said it was exploring ways to tackle the problem of ice falling from the structure after the bridge was forced to close again this morning due to falling ice.

Transport Scotland says its reviewed other measures used on bridged in North American and Scandinavia to see what options are available to tackle falling ice on the Queensferry Crossing.

The review found no single method or technology has been found to be completely successful in mitigating the problem of ice forming or removing its build-up.

It also found other structures had monitoring and forecasting systems in place but most operators would close their bridges and wait for the ice to fall.

Potential options for the Queensferry Crossing include sheaths for cabling, vibration systems, ultrasonic de-icing systems and robotics. 

Transport Scotland said bridge operator BEAR Scotland is currently reviewing these options and plans to take into account cost, frequency of ice events and the safety of road users into consideration when considering methods for testing. 

A Transport Scotland spokesman said: “Safety of road users is paramount and our operating company took the decision to close the Queensferry Crossing due to the risk of falling ice on safety grounds.

“During any emergency closure of the Queensferry Crossing a diversion route will be implemented using the Forth Road Bridge or Kincardine Bridge as appropriate dependent on the duration of the closure required.

On this occasion due to the forecast short-term duration of the closure, traffic was diverted via Kincardine Bridge in accordance with established procedures.

“Research and development work is underway to explore a method or technology to mitigate the problem of ice build-up on the bridge in the longer term."

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