Bridge strike protection and impact detection

​Protection beam, Countess Street, Brisbane City

​Bridge strike protection

A bridge strike (when an over-height vehicle collides with a rail bridge) can be extremely dangerous. It can also cause costly damage to rail infrastructure and frustrating delays for road users and rail customers.
Since July 2015, Queensland Rail has invested $15.5 million to install bridge strike protection beams on approach to 14 high priority bridges across SEQ. These specially designed protection beams prevent over-height vehicles coming into contact with the bridge and significantly reduce the likelihood of a vehicle rolling should it strike the beam.

Protection beam locations

  • Brisbane City - Countess Street
  • Dakabin - Alma Road
  • Dutton Park - Annerley Road
  • Graceville - Long Street East
  • Indooroopilly - Allwood Street
  • Moorooka - Muriel Avenue
  • Nambour - Price Street
  • Palmwoods - Margaret Street
  • Palmwoods - Woombye-Palmwoods Road
  • Sadliers​ Crossing - Gladstone Road
  • Thagoona - Kavanagh Road East
  • Woombye - Back Woombye Road
  • Wulkuraka - Dixon Street
  • Wynnum - Pine Street

Bridge impact detection

Queensland Rail's bridge impact detection system project allows for bridge strikes to be remotely reported back to Queensland Rail via a Structural Monitoring and Alert System (SMAS).

The SMAS provides remote sensing and video monitoring of bridges to allow for immediate assessment of the impact after a vehicle collision. When a bridge collision is detected, Queensland Rail is forced to halt trains running along that line while an inspection occurs to ensure that the track is still safe to run on. The Structural Monitoring and Alert System helps to reduce the time it takes to resume services. 

The SMAS includes sensors mounted on the bridge structure to monitor and measure the force of an impact, along with a CCTV system to allow remote viewing and recording of the incident. Queensland Rail manages all personal information that may be captured via this process in accordance with its obligations under the Information Privacy Act 2009. For more information, see Queensland Rail's Privacy Statement.

Structural Monitoring and Alert System (SMAS) locations

  • Annerley - Denham Street
  • Auchenflower - Cue Street
  • Beenleigh - Market Place Drive
  • Booval - Bergin Street
  • Bowen Hills - Exhibition
  • Brisbane City - Countess Street
  • Bundamba - Byrne Street
  • Buranda - Logan Road
  • Coomera - Carpark Bridge
  • Corinda - Allan Terrace
  • Corinda - Dunlop Terrace
  • Corinda - Oxley Road
  • Corinda - Quarry Road
  • Dakabin - Alma Street
  • Dutton Park - Annerley Road
  • Eudlo - Rosebed Street
  • Gaythorne - Pickering Street
  • Goodna - Bertha Street
  • Indooroopilly - Allwood Street
  • Ipswich - Marsden Parade
  • Lawnton - Leis Parade
  • Milton - Boomerang Street
  • Milton - Cribb Street
  • Milton - Park Road
  • Mooloolah - Neill Road
  • Morayfield - William Berry Drive / Visentin Road connection
  • Nambour - Price Street
  • Palmwoods - Margaret Street / Woombye Palmwoods Road
  • Rocklea - Muriel Avenue
  • South Bank - Ernest Street
  • South Bank - Glenelg Street
  • South Bank - Tribune Street
  • South Brisbane - Peel Street
  • Toowong - Sylvan Road
  • Woombye - Back Woombye Road
  • Wulkuraka - Dixon Street
  • Wulkuraka - Gladstone Road
  • Wynnum - Pine Street
  • Yeronga - Park Road

Every low clearance rail bridge is fitted with signage on all approaches. It's up to motorists to know their vehicle height, plan their route to avoid low clearance bridges and stay focused on the road.

Motorists who damage rail infrastructure can be fined $1,290 and four demerit points. Queensland Rail actively pursues motorists for the cost of repairs which would otherwise be borne by taxpayers. If the matter goes to court, the maximum penalty for causing damage to rail infrastructure is $​12,904.