Rail bridge repairs in Cumbria avoid salmon spawning

Cummersdale Viaduct
Image caption Work will start on the Cummersdale Viaduct on Christmas Eve

Repairs are to be carried out on a north Cumbria rail bridge during December to avoid the salmon spawning season.

The deck of Cummersdale Viaduct, which carries rail lines over the River Caldew between Carlisle and Dalston, is being replaced in a £1m project.

Work will start on Christmas Eve after train services stop running and will continue until 28 December.

Network Rail will also paint the bridge green as part of the work.

Chris Chatfield, scheme project manager for Network Rail, said: "Compared to many other railway lines, the Cumbria coast line is relatively lightly used.

'Finish the work'

"However, it provides a vital link for all the communities it serves.

"The deck of the existing viaduct is made of timber planks, which are now life expired and need replacing.

"We will use rail mounted equipment to lift out the old timbers and install the new steel deck units, which come in 46 pieces."

Scaffolding has been attached to the underside of the viaduct and covered in an environmental wrap to protect the river below.

The fish breeding also means work will not be completed before June 2012.

Mr Chatfield added: "The salmon breeding season lasts from September to June so we will have to come back next summer to finish the work."

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