This was the scene as a Two massive cranes recovered an articulated lorry from a gutter of the A31 in a three-hour operation that has taken place overnight in the New Forest.
The A31 was closed yesterday morning but due to the impact on traffic, the recovery of the lorry had to be delayed by 24 hours. Specialists from RD Avery made the area safe for the road to be reopened to rush hour traffic on Monday morning.
Emergency services were called in the early hours of the morning following a collision between a car and the LGV that left the carriageway just after 3am on Monday morning. Police and Highways England closed one lane of the eastbound carriageway between Ringwood and Cadnam at Bratley Arch.
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The vehicle, carrying tonnes of fresh food contains bananas and carrots, toppled into a verge on Monday after the driver lost control of the vehicle after striking a car.
While the driver managed to climb out of his cab unhurt, his lorry was left embedded into the embankment of the carriageway.
Following the crash, some attempts were made to rescue the lorry but they proved unsuccessful. Delays throughout the evening. have also dogged the. recover with Traffic management crews failing to close the. road on time. Many an upset HGV drivers who have penned into lay by in the closure unable to move or park with many being stacked on the closed carriageway.
But this evening’s late night operation under a full moon was more fruitful as just after 12am, a sea of yellow lights could be seen as the crane slowly but surely pulled the vehicle back on to the road. The scene was like an episode of Jamie Davies Heavy Rescue Recovery program.The operation was carried out in two stages, with the trailer pulled out first before the cab was slowly lifted and placed back on the road. The large goods vehicle has been taken away by a recovery truck.
The rescue was monitored by Highways England which was called in after an environmental alert was issued.
A spokesman for Highways England said: “Our officers were on site working with the fire service, police and specialist contractors to remove the trailer containing approximately 30 tonnes of Bananas and carrots from gutter we have now passed this to one of our contractors who are managing the recovery”
One motorist Caught up in the diversion said: “I think the accident was just one of those unfortunate things and thankfully nobody was killed or indeed hurt.”
Specialist contractors who managed the recovery from RD Avery brought in a Foden 6×6 Recovery Vehicle and two specialist heavy recovery vehicle with cranes, and a team of support staff.
Over seeing the smooth running of the operation Recovery Manager Colin Ryan said “ The recover has gone to plan and we have successfully removed the fully laden lorry. Safety is paramount in an operation of this size along with timing to not impact on road users. The reason we requested the closure of both lanes of the A31 was due to the location and how far off the carriageway the vehicle had come to rest. The recovery has gone to plan”