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Seven-mile road closure after massive crane smashes into Perthshire bridge

Crane crash on the A85 at Lochearnhead
Crane crash on the A85 at Lochearnhead

A historic Perthshire bridge has been put out of action after it was struck by a massive 16-wheel crane.

The monster vehicle came to grief at the centuries-old crossing, near Lochearnhead, just after 7am on Friday.

It is believed the crane got stuck while making a tight corner near roadworks on the A85 route. Some of its wheels were left hanging over the parapet.

Emergency services were called to the A85 at St Fillans on Friday morning.

Emergency services were scrambled to the scene and a seven-mile stretch of the busy commuter route was shut down.

Efforts to remove the crane are ongoing and likely to last into the weekend. A full assessment of the bridge, which crosses the Ogle Burn, will be carried out once the vehicle has gone.

A Bear Scotland spokeswoman said: “Our team is assisting Police Scotland following an incident involving a large crane striking the bridge at Lochearnhead this morning.

“Work is currently ongoing to safely recover the vehicle, after which further assessments of the damage to the bridge will be completed.”

She said: “As the vehicle recovery is complex the road is currently anticipated to remain closed throughout Friday and into Saturday.

“A diversion route has been implemented and we thank road users for their patience while the vehicle recovery is completed and assessment of the damage carried out prior to reopening.”

In the meantime motorists face extensive detours, with westbound traffic from Crieff redirected along the A923 and onto the A9 past Doune and Callander.

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “The A85 at St Fillans was closed following a road traffic incident where part of a roadway has been damaged. Officers were called to the scene at around 7.10am on Friday.

“No-one was injured but the road is expected to be closed for some time to allow for recovery of the vehicle and to ensure the area is made safe.”

She urged drivers to avoid the area.

Firefighters from nearby Killin, Comrie and Tyndrum were called out just after 7.40am.

“On arrival, all persons had been released from the vehicle,” a fire service spokesman said. “Firefighters then made the scene safe.”

In June, another old bridge on the A85 route was left damaged after it was hit by a car.

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