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Bollard Claim From Fire Brigade.

The driver of a fire engine which hit Manchester's rising bollards has been cleared of any blame.

Manchester council now faces a £6,000 insurance claim from the brigade.

Since the bollards were introduced two-and-a-half years ago a number of cars, which are not permitted to pass over them, and even buses - which are - have smashed into them.

The £330,000 fire appliance collided with the metal poles as it returned from routine safety checks in the city centre.

The engine, which carried a hydraulic platform, was off the road for two weeks. It is one of only six such special vehicles across the county.

The incident happened on Cross Street in November. Another fire engine had passed over the bollards moments before the crash. They are not in operation between 7pm and 11am and are triggered after the first vehicle after 11am passes over them. The incident happened at 11.02am. Both engines from Manchester Central Station, were equipped with a credit card sized key attached to the windscreen, which should be automatically scanned, lowering the bollards.

Watch a video of cars hitting the bollards here

The first engine that passed over triggered the start of the system - as it was the first vehicle to pass after 11am. But the bollards only rose two seconds before the next vehicle was upon them.

It is understood a fire service report says the engine that was damaged was 25 metres behind the first vehicle according to CCTV evidence and therefore could not be deemed to be tailgating.

Tony Ciaramella, Assistant County Fire Officer (Operations) for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service said: "On the 24th November 2008 one of our vehicles on routine, non emergency duties was involved in an incident on Cross Street, Manchester city centre involving a collision with a set of rising bollards.

"The incident resulted in mechanical damage to the vehicle - which then required recovery to our vehicle workshops.

"Following the incident a full internal investigation took place and this concluded that there were no identified failings in fire service procedures or in the actions of our personnel.

"The incident will now be the subject of ongoing discussions between our insurance company and Manchester Council, who operate the system".

Last month the council defended the bollards after a Metroshuttle bus became the latest victim. Three people were taken to hospital after the accident on St Mary's Gate, near Marks and Spencer.

Buses are fitted with transmitters which lower the bollards as they approach.

But the council stood by the scheme, saying all the accidents so far were due to driver error.

Asked to respond to the fire engine incident, Chris Barber, head of highways services, said: "We have not yet received the results of the Fire Service's internal investigation and until we know what the conclusions are it is not appropriate for us to make any further comment."

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Added: Apr-10-2009 
By: barnesy
In:
News
Tags: Bollard, Claim, From, Fire, Brigade.
Location: Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom (UK/GB) (load item map)
Views: 10499 | Comments: 5 | Votes: 0 | Favorites: 1 | Shared: 1 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 1
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