Glenville railroad bridge struck by box truck Thursday — Maple Avenue bridge

Box truck trailer with roof torn off

The scene Thursday 

GLENVILLE — Same story, different bridge.

The driver of a box truck heading northbound on Thursday struck the 10-foot high rail bridge that passes over Maple Avenue just before 1 p.m., peeling the roof of the truck off, according to Glenville Police Chief Stephen Janik.

Janik didn’t have any additional details later Thursday afternoon since the incident was still being investigated, but he said it’s rare for trucks to crash into the bridge because of how low and narrow the structure is. He added that it’s not uncommon for vehicles driving in opposite directions to yield to one another before passing under the bridge, due to the narrow passageway.

“It’s very obvious how small the Maple Avenue bridge is,” Janik said. “It’s nerve-racking to drive a pickup truck through it, let alone a box truck.”

It’s not the first time the Maple Avenue bridge has been struck by a box truck. Similar incidents occurred last June and September. Drivers on both occasions were issued traffic citations.

Bridge strikes are not uncommon in town, though they are typically associated with the infamous 10-foot, 11-inch rail bridge that passes over Glenridge Road.

But the number of trucks striking that bridge has dropped sharply in recent months since the state’s Department of Transportation installed a set of turnarounds just before the bridge last year, as part of an effort to prevent the crashes that have closed the road for extended periods to clean up the wreckage.

The state is currently in the process of installing a laser detection system that will prompt flashing lights warning the driver of the low bridge ahead. Construction for the project is expected to be completed later this summer.

Janik noted that the addition of the turnarounds has helped reduce bridge strikes, but added that local media coverage and attention the incidents have gained on social media have also been beneficial in addressing the problem.

“Hopefully, the final step with the laser activated lighting … that they’re working on now is going to be the last thing that we need in regards to eliminating, if not mitigate, the amount of strikes,” he said.

Contact reporter Chad Arnold at: [email protected] or by calling 518-395-3120.

Categories: News, News, Schenectady County, Scotia Glenville

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