11-mile queues took place at Kincardine Bridge on Friday morning after the Forth Road Bridge was closed due to an unsafe crack in its steelwork. Kindcardine Bridge, the closest alternative crossing, adds 40 miles to a journey – which means some drivers may not complete their deliveries in one shift, the FTA has said.
The closure also caused six-mile tailbacks at Clackmannanshire Bridge.
The Forth Road Bridge, which connects Edinburgh to Fife, has more than 70,000 vehicles cross it every day.
The Scottish Government has requested the FTA ask its members to report any issues or delays with drivers’ hours. Based on this information, it will ‘decide whether to apply to the Department of Transport for a variation in drivers’ hours regulations.’
“This has come at the busiest time of year for freight operators and will cause serious issues in terms of delivery times and drivers’ hours over the Christmas period,” said Chris MacRae, FTA’s head of policy for Scotland.
He added: “We would urge Transport Scotland to ensure that any planned roadworks on the alternative routes are postponed and that HGV-suitable diversions – including those for petrochemicals – are explored to minimise disruption as much as possible.”
The Forth Road Bridge was closed from midnight on Friday 4th December and will remain closed until the New Year. Repairs to the bridge are expected to be finalised ‘in time for the return to work in January.’