North Yorkshire County Council is launching an investigation after Whitby Swing Bridge was damaged yesterday afternoon (Wednesday May 10).
The gate that closes the bridge to traffic on the town's west side was crushed at about 5.30pm yesterday as the bridge was swinging open for harbour traffic. One of the fencing panels next to the gate on the fixed end of the bridge was also damaged and has ended up in the river.
The County Council and Scarborough Borough Council, which operates the bridge, have now launched an investigation into the incident.
The bridge is currently open to road and pedestrian traffic but closed to harbour traffic.
The County Council will close the bridge to road traffic tomorrow at 7am (Friday) to install a temporary gate and to retrieve the damaged panel. Pedestrians will still be able to cross the bridge. It is hoped the bridge will reopen at 7am on Saturday (May 13)
The County Council believes the 50-year-old gate is so badly damaged a new gate will have to be made along with the fencing panel.
"This was a very unfortunate incident," said David Bowe, North Yorkshire's Corporate Director for Business and Environmental Services. "We do not really know how this could have happened but we are investigating. We will be closing the bridge tomorrow morning to install a temporary gate and fencing panel and will complete this work as quickly as possible."