Dudwell Lane at Skircoat Green re-opens after nearly two years

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Dudwell Lane is being re-opened after nearly two years following the completion of landslip works.

Road resurfacing is expected to be completed later today.

Dudwell Lane, Skircoat Green.

Dudwell Lane, Skircoat Green.

On February 5, 2011, the road at Skircoat Green, was closed after a Halifax-bound passenger train was derailed.

Torrential rain had earlier sent a 15 metre section of retaining wall tumbling down the embankment.

Passengers on the 5.55 am service from Hebden Bridge recalled a “large bang” and shaking after the train hit the debris near Dryclough Junction.

All but one wheel left the tracks but the two-carriage train remained upright and none of the eight passengers and two crew were injured.

The road closure has disrupted access to hundreds of Skircoat Green properties and the Calderdale Royal Hospital.

Network Rail said sigificant excavation of the footpath and road were necessary and all utilities in the road needed relocating which were also significant and had a detrimental impact on progress.

An investigation by the Rail Accident Investigation Branch found that Calderdale Council highways department had reported cracks in the pavement behind the wall to Network Rail on several occasions and had closed the footpath as a precaution.

The investigation found deficiencies in the examination of the wall by Network Rail’s contractor and in the way Network Rail handled reports from Calderdale Council .

The RAIB made five recommendations to Network Rail relating to the structures examination process, the control of minor civil engineering construction works and the system for dealing with reports.