Tyne Tunnel bosses score with Sunderland AFC fans and Nissan staff

Tyne Tunnel bosses are giving travelling Sunderland AFC fans some extra time.

Friday, 1st November 2019, 5:51 pm
Updated Saturday, 2nd November 2019, 12:26 pm
CEO TT2 Limited Phil Smith

Operator TT2 Limited is changing the time of its overnight maintenance closures in response to feedback from Black Cats fans and staff at Sunderland’s Nissan plant.

Maintenance work takes place overnight at the Tyne Tunnel each night from Monday to Thursday, with a closure of approximately 10 minutes to allow staff safe entry, after which a 10-mph speed limit is in force during the maintenance period.

Now the management responsible for the two tunnels has taken the decision to change the time that they close to allow maintenance staff in from around 10pm to 11.45pm.

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The decision comes after a number of customers contacted the tunnel operator to say the earlier closing time was a problem, as it caused delays for Sunderland fans living north of the Tyne who were returning home from midweek games, as well as affecting late shift workers at Nissan.

The new closure and maintenance times will come into effect from Monday, November 4.

Chris Ward, Customer Operations Manager at TT2 Limited said the move was a response to demand from tunnel users: “Following customer feedback, we’re delighted to announce a change in time for the closures which take place prior to our overnight maintenance work, which will positively impact our customers working at Nissan and attending Sunderland games in the evening.

“In order to keep our customers safe, we must carry out regular maintenance on the tunnels, both in areas which can and can’t be seen from the main road, and it is essential that we close the tunnel briefly to allow our team safe access to the place they’re working.

“We’ve monitored the levels of traffic throughout the night, and we’re certain we’ve found a time that will impact the minimum number of customers, while still adhering to our high standard of safety for our staff.

“We’d like to thank our customers for their constructive and helpful feedback which has helped us to inform our decision.”