The freighter hit the Holtino High Bridges early Wednesday morning. Now bridge inspectors have found damage to the structures. This was announced by the State Office for Road Construction and Traffic in Kiel in the early afternoon. “The special team was already able to determine the presence of deformations in the cross-beams on each of the bridges as well as numerous cracks in the weld seams and also seam tears,” explained Suzanne Müller, Business Unit Manager responsible.
Further examination takes several days
Therefore, high bridges remain closed to traffic, including pedestrians and cyclists. Other outside experts should closely examine damages and effects on stability and road safety. The state company said that would likely take several days. So it is not clear when the closures will be lifted. For safety reasons, Mueller said, no compromises can be made. Only ambulances and fire engines are allowed to cross the bridges at walking speed in individual cases.
Traffic has been diverted
At 4:37 a.m. on Wednesday, the heavy work vessel “Merry” collided with the boom it was transporting and damaged the Holtenau elevated bridge. The freighter was flying the Finnish flag on the canal towards Brunsbüttel (Dithmarschen district) when its cargo hit the bridges. According to the current status of the investigation, no one was hurt. Since then, the lanes have been closed.
The B503 is one of the most important roads in the Kiel region. Many drivers use Holtenauer Hochbrücke to drive to work in the Rendsburg-Eckernförde region or in Kiel. Traffic will be diverted. According to the police, drivers should avoid the B76 through the tunnels.
Tons of weight fell into the canal
According to the Waterways and Shipping Department, the freighter also lost several heavy concrete weights in the collision, which now lies at the bottom of the Kiel Canal. Experts are currently investigating whether it can be removed or if the channel can be launched again with restrictions.
Consequences of bus traffic in Kiel
According to the Kieler Verkehrsgesellschaft (KVG), there are also restrictions for passengers using public transport. According to KVG spokeswoman Andrea Coburg, buses from Strand, Schilkesee and Holtenau currently only go to the passenger ferry in Holtenau. There, travelers could cross the Kiel Canal. Passengers at the NDR Schleswig-Holstein dock at Holtenau told that the ferry was running unscheduled shuttle services in the morning to ferry passengers quickly across the canal. However, columns did form on the north side of the canal. According to the Office of Waterways and Freight, the “Adler 1” ferry can carry about 50 people and about 20 bicycles per trip. Currently cyclists and pedestrians are taken alternately through the canal.
It was not clear at first how the collision occurred and the extent of property damage. No information has yet been provided about the damage to the ship anchored in the northern port. The water police agent began the investigation.
“Music specialist. Pop culture trailblazer. Problem solver. Internet advocate.”