News and Media

Exploring the importance of Low Bridge Detection Systems (LBDS)

Bridge strikes frequently occur in areas where roads pass under railways and, in some cases, over public roads carrying footpaths, posing a significant risk to both road and rail users, endangering lives and causing delays on the road and rail networks.

According to Network Rail, on average, every day across Britain, at least five heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) and/or buses put others at risk due to bridge strikes. Reports show 32% of drivers admit to being unaware of the height of their vehicle, and 56% not considering low bridges when planning their journey, leading to collisions, costly delays, and potential harm to the public.

In the financial year 2021/22, Network Rail recorded a staggering 1,833 bridge strikes, with approximately 40 to 50 related to buses. These incidents collectively cost nearly £12m in delay, weeks of closures, and thousands of pounds in cancellation fees. Each bridge strike can delay tens of thousands of passengers while inspections and repairs take place, incurring significant expenses from public funds. However, the repercussions are not limited to rail passengers; hauliers and coach operators also suffer, facing extended journey times resulting from detours and increased fuel consumption.

The consequences of bridge strikes to drivers and their employees are severe, including injury, economic loss (job loss), prosecution leading to imprisonment, or loss of driver’s licence, and potential loss of operator’s license. Companies are also liable for various costs, including bridge inspections, repairs, vehicle recovery, and train service delays.

Low Bridge Detection System (LBDS)

The Low Bridge Detection System is a revolutionary solution, designed and manufactured in the UK to reduce the risk of collisions with bridges. A visual and audible warning system advises the driver to stop the vehicle, alerting them to low bridges in advance.

Key Features

• GPS vehicle location data detects up to 3,750 bridges
• Automated detection during installation requiring zero driver input
• False alert feedback communication
• Receives updates and communications remotely to ensure optimal functionality
• Activates alerts within a 300m² zone
• Compliant with E Mark and UKCA standards, ensuring its reliability and safety


Implementing the Low Bridge Detection System offers a range of benefits including significantly decreasing the likelihood of bridge strikes, helping protect driving licences and safeguarding company reputation. Installation of LBDS allows drivers and operators to navigate routes with confidence, knowing they are equipped to avoid costly collisions.

The recent incident at London Euston station highlights the urgent need of comprehensive solutions like LBDS to prevent bridge strikers and their ensuing chaos. With hundreds of passengers left stranded due to a bus hitting a railway bridge in Harrow.

View the Low Bridge Detection System here.

Bridge strikes are costly and dangerous, that can jeopardise lives and livelihoods. By implementing a Low Bridge Detection System and adhering to preventative measures, we can navigate our roads and railways more safely, protecting both travellers and infrastructure.

The Government provides resources to promote bridge strike prevention. These include guidelines for professional drivers, and transport managers.
• Prevention of bridge strikes: a good practice guide for transport managers -

• Prevention of bridge strikes: a good practice guide for professional drivers -

• The Road Haulage Association (RHA) also offers a free toolbox talk, which drivers can use to educate themselves and their colleagues about the risks of bridge strikes.

(Source: Network Rail)


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