Narrowboat incident closes canal

Cranes will be brought in to lift the stranded boat out of the lock – photo courtesy of @EightTwentyDes on Twitter Cranes will be brought in to lift the stranded boat out of the lock – photo courtesy of @EightTwentyDes on Twitter
Industry Database

INLAND WATERWAYS: The Kennet and Avon Canal in Bath has been partially closed due to a narrowboat overturning in a lock at the weekend, which will no doubt inconvenience other users.

Thankfully there were no casualties but it will be a tricky operation to refloat and remove the boat so the section between locks 10 and 11 will be closed at least until the end of the week.

Jonathan Ludford from the Canal and River Trust (CRT) told Boating Business this is in part because fish will have to be removed before any salvage operation can take place.

Mr Ludford went on: “Then we will have to remove the water between the locks, all 3 million litres of it, before we crane the vessel out of the lock, which could take another two days.”

The incident happened because the narrowboat was not moved forward from the cill in the lock before the gates were operated. This resulted in the back of the boat being lifted out of the water as the water drained and the front of the vessel being submerged.

The narrowboat was on hire from Worcestershire based ABC Boat Hire and it will no doubt be an expensive insurance job.

Mr Ludford said these incidents are quite rare, even though there are thousands of boats using the locks each day.

“The safety message here is clear here. Enjoy yourself and have fun on the canals this summer, but take care and exercise caution. Make sure you listen to the boatyard when you hire your boat – if you are unsure of anything ask before you go out on the water.”

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