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Truck driver challenges Orange Line bridge in Malden; bridge wins

Truck wedged under an Orange Street bridge in Malden

Gordon Hallett shows us that yet another truck driver has learned a valuable lesson at the bridge that carries the Orange Line over Medford Street in Malden around noon today: That if a bridge has a sign reading 12'6", you better make sure your truck is a couple inches shorter than that, or you're going to get mocked mercilessly for storrowing a bridge. And a ticket.

Free tagging: 


First, I was wondering if Waze or other traffic/mapping apps have a version for trucks and what roads they can and cannot go on.

Second, how about if the state (or country) mandates that vehicles over a certain height are required to have one of these apps or some other GPS system that sets off an alarm if they go on a prohibited road?

Or is it just not that big of a deal.....

That would make too much sense.


Back in my hitchhiking days (which ended in the mid '70s), I got picked up by a trucker driving up US 5 in NH/VT, and I had to move a very thick book off the passenger seat (thicker than any phone book I had seen) of underpasses under 14 feet in New England.


Commercial GPS products meant for truckers absolutely have clearance information. Of course, they're not cheap, and some trucking companies are.


Some GPS units targeted towards the truck and RV market do exactly that. The user inputs their restrictions, like height, and the unit will keep the user out of trouble.

For some odd reason, trucking companies don't provide them while crying poverty, and then hire the cheapest drivers they can find, and this happens.

I wonder if insurers will need to start demanding them?

In this case, there was absolutely no excuse for the truck driver in question to go under the bridge, especially if there was a sign saying that trucks above a certain height could not/should not go under it.

Talk about screwing over other people--this guy took the cake.

assuming that the same signs are on the other side too, that is.

This is what the other side looked like in September 2018, when the Google Street Viewer last visited.

And this is what you see at the traffic light a few blocks away. Though if you turned left or right onto Medford Street there, you might miss these.

They should paint little truck silhouettes on bridges for every truck "storrowed", like the flags on the fuselage of fighter plane. That might not get a trucker's attention but it would be a cool way to keep score.


... though I have the sneaking suspicion that we'd need the make the stenciled truck icon pretty small - that bridge ain't all that big.

If 5 makes an Ace, all hail Lord Sky Marshall Storrow

as most of the ones entering Storrow do: The actual clearance itself ISN'T stated on the sign.

The actual clearance is on another sign attached to the same traffic signal.


A little air out the tires should do the trick.

I like how the 12-6 sign in the picture is bent. No doubt from a close encounter with a 14' metal box.

I do believe we are at the cusp of creating a new "Boston English" word. I'm off to use it at the 11foot8 website

because they get at least as many as we do, if not more.

They don't call that bridge the can opener for nothing.