The bridge with the notorious reputation for wreaking havoc on unwary truckers and known as the 'can opener' by locals in Durham has been raised - slightly - and replaced.  The steel from the 11 ft 8 inch clearance bridge is being recycled by Always Buying Scrap - and who knows, it may even be turned into can openers after reprocessing. In an unusual twist, we've sold one piece of the destructive bridge to Ripley's Believe it or Not. 

Can opener bridge piece for RipleyThe bridge is a train trestle and was built about seven decades ago before standards on minimum clearance were enacted. The number of too-tall trucks is not known that were mangled by attempting to drive under the bridge. So frequent were the accidents that a website was set up that featured the mayhem, and drivers who managed to miss all the warning signs and still continued through the height indicator boom often ended up on the local news.

Last year in October (2019), the bridge was raised to a height of 12 foot four inches - still quite low.  Less than a month later, the first truck hit the new bridge.  After the old bridge was taken down, Ripley's Believe it Or Not approached Always Buying Scrap to buy a piece of one of the girders from us, so the Ripley's seal on this page is authentic. Ripleys got our number from the bridge company that had removed the old trestles and they approached us and bought the piece in the picture.  And for contractors who demolish bridges, please give us a call for your steel.

If you're into motoring mayhem, go and enjoy the videos at, which has a series of videos of accidents from the bridge. J├╝rgen Henn, who runs the 11foot8 site, says that the piece of steel that Ripleys purchased is from the 'crash beam' from the bridge. This was the part of the bridge that bore all the impact forces in the crashes.

The picture below is a screengrab from one of their videos.

Oblivious driver mangles his truck trying to get under low bridge



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