Bridge probe is not a closed case; RECORD VIEW.
THE indefinite closure of the Forth Road Bridge is a disaster for Scotland.
It's not just the travel disruption and traffic misery that thousands will have to endure in the weeks running up to Christmas.
There's also the devastating economic cost, which is likely to run into millions and millions of pounds.
So it's extremely alarming to hear that an construction expert believes the vital road link may never open to heavy vehicles again.
And it's also becoming increasingly clear that the bridge could well remain closed to all traffic until well into the new year.
The Scottish Government's priority over the next few weeks will be minimising the impact on commuters. But there must also be a quick and thorough investigation into how such a serious fault was allowed to develop on such an essential public asset.
Put bluntly, it is not acceptable that this shambles was allowed to happen in 2015.
Serious questions about the run-up to the discovery of the 2cm crack are emerging. We know it's part of a linkage system which was found to "be significantly overstressed during certain combinations of loading" in 2010.
A PS15million strengthening programme was ordered but almost immediately cancelled before work finally got under way again this year. Why? There will also be strong suspicions that transfer of the maintenance contract to private firm Amey played a role in what has gone wrong.
The SNP will point out they are building a new forth crossing at considerable expense. But that doesn't excuse them for neglecting the existing bridge.
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|Title Annotation:||News; Opinion; Columns|
|Publication:||Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)|
|Date:||Dec 7, 2015|
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