BRIDGE 34 – GOTHERINGTON – FINAL REPORT & SUMMARY ON REPAIRS (11.3.18)
This is the longest bridge on the railway and it had leaking deck plates, leading to corrosion of major steel structural beams. Deep ballast led to rotting of timber ballast boards and the vertical steel ballast retaining plates. End of deck brick ballast retaining walls had partly collapsed allowing ballast to slip onto the bearings and into the road. This problem and, as the end of deck drains were too high, allowed water to get onto the padstones and exacerbate the corrosion of the steel and cause the padstone to wear quicker. Also some padstones were too short and the steel was overhanging them. This led to vertical movement of the track bearers when trains were passing. The main structural steelwork to the underside of the bridge had not been cleaned or painted for at least 37 years (more likely 50 years) allowing corrosion to proceed more quickly. The repair and construction works were completed in 7 weeks despite sub-zero temperature mixed with almost continuous rain during January.
The following photos illustrate samples of the problems and the work done to rectify them:-
1. Removing old ballast & waterproofing (5.1.18).
2. Encapsulating the entire bridge ready for shot blasting and painting. (22.1.18)
3. Cross beam connection showing corrosion (21.10.14).
4. Cross beam connection after blasting and painting (2.2.18).
5. Cross girder notched and overhanging padstone (29.1.18).
6. Cross girder repaired (28.1.18).
7. Track bearer corrosion and notching and overhanging padstone (17.1.18).
8. Track bearer repair (28.1.18).
9. Padstone built up and grouted (also bottom flange repair) (30.1.18).
10. Holes in deck plates (8.1.18).
11. Cutting plates for repairs (19.1.18).
12. Deck plate repairs completed (28.1.18).
13. End drip plates welded on (26.1.18).
14. Ballast board and vertical steel ballast plate corrosion and timber ballast board rot (10.1.18)
15. Down side showing replacement ballast plates (19.1.18).
16. Blast cleaning deck for waterproofing (7.2.18).
17. Deck after orange priming (8.2.18).
18. Up side deck after waterproofing (white) (9.2.18).
19. View of deck – down side quilted, up side waterproofed (9.2.18).
20. Up side showing ballast walls being built (2.2.18).
21. View showing end of deck drains (12.2.18).
22. Down side with sleeper laying just started (21.2.18).
23. Down side view with track re-laid (7.3.18).
25. View at road level towards Gotherington
John Balderstone, Bridge Engineer.