Published: Mon, August 29, 2016
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Channel highway reopens day after bridge collapse

Any investigation into the M20 bridge collapse is expected to look into events leading up to the crash, plus how the bridge was maintained.

Andy Sunnucks, who witnessed the crash said, "It looked like a lorry had jackknifed, and I could see half the bridge was missing".

Quite often pedestrian bridges are put in place in three sections - two supports and a drop-in section in the middle, and it appears as if this middle section has come down.

The accident happened just after midday and fix work is likely to see the motorway closed until well into tomorrow. The man, estimated to be in his 50s, was hospitalized with suspected broken ribs, the South East Coast Ambulance Service said.

Another eyewitness who narrowly escaped the collapse said that the bridge "could have fallen right on top of our auto".

The M20 has partially reopened more than 24 hours after a footbridge collapsed, sparking hours of traffic chaos on one of the busiest weekends of the year.

"The back end of the lorry was in pieces".

"But on the other side of the road the bridge is cracking as well".

The graphic designer, a passenger travelling from Maidstone to Sevenoaks, said: "The motorcyclist was laying down underneath his bike".

Police were treating it as a "major incident".

The reopening was several hours later than planned, and Highways England said the westbound carriageway of the motorway, which links London with the Channel Tunnel and the Port of Dover, was still closed.

Highways England confirmed that the M26 in Kent had been closed eastbound between the M25 junction 25 and the M20 J3 to "assist management of traffic" following the incident.

He asked for drivers to be patient while workers undertook "a complex operation" that would "take time and skill to complete".

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