They say bad luck comes in threes and hopefully that is the case for Nottingham Express Transit with the third high profile incident in recent months seeing major damage to the overhead at Basford. The damage happened due to a technical fault with a pantograph at approximately 0730 on Tuesday 18th July and currently services remain suspended through the area.
Exact details of what happened have not been released by Nottingham Express Transit but local reports suggest that Incentro 213 was travelling northbound when its pantograph failed to lower sufficiently as it was running under a bridge. The pantograph struck the bridge and the tram then continued damaging approximately 300 metres of overhead.
Services were immediately suspended in the vicinity whilst an investigation into what had happened and how long it would take for full services to resume took place. Unfortunately, the damage was found to be severe and no trams have run between The Forest and David Lane since. NET have confirmed no trams will run on this section again on Friday 21st July with repairs still ongoing.
The following tram services are currently running:
Hucknall to David Lane
Phoenix Park to Highbury Vale
Toton Lane to The Forest
Clifton South to The Forest
Replacement buses are running from The Forest to Wilkinson Street, Phoenix Park and Bulwell tramstops. NET tickets are also been accepted on NCT Yellow Services (68/69/70/71) from Bulwell to the city with East Midlands Trains accepting tickets between Nottingham, Bulwell and Hucknall.
With Wilkinson Street currently in the closed section this has caused complications for the trams which are unable to return for their usual overnight servicing. As such they are being stabled at other locations on the network.
Incidents like this are always going to happen on a tram network – and indeed have on other networks in the UK, with Midland Metro being a prime example previously – but the length of time it is taking to repair the damage and to return services to normal will only be damaging to the reputation of NET. In recent months there have been numerous delays across the network – including a high profile derailment and a collision in the city centre – with this latest incident adding further fuel to the fire that NET is an unreliable transport system.