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Commuters face rush-hour delays as part of the M11 remains closed after chemical spill

06:48 04 July 2014

Road closed sign. Picture: Bill Darnell.

Road closed sign. Picture: Bill Darnell.

A section of the M11 remains shut this morning after a chemical spill last night forced overnight closures.

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Although it is hoped the road will be reopened by 9am, the M11 southbound between junctions seven and eight are currently still shut - after an overturned lorry poured chemical fooam over a 25-metre section of the carriageway at around 5pm last night.

The foam started to solidify on contact with the carriageway and penetrated the surface.

Ian Jobson, operations manager, said: “We have been working throughout the night to ensure the foam is removed as quickly and safely as possible but this is a complicated operation.

“The nature of the chemical involved has meant that we have had to ensure none of it reaches the water course and so the clean up operation involves jetwashing the carriageway surface and then using gulley suckers to ensure all liquid is removed and can be safely and environmentally disposed of away from the scene.

“We are working as quickly as we can and we would like to thank road users for their patience while we carry out this important work.”

A 150-metre exclusion zone was put in place until it could be established that the foam was not releasing toxic fumes.

The northbound carriageway opened at 5.50am this morning.

Commuters have been advised to check their route and plan their journeys in advance. Soutbound traffic has been advised to follow the hollow square symbol on diversion signs, which will direct traffic to leave the M11 at junction eight and travel along the A120 to Puckeridge, then join the A10 and continue to Harlow to join the A414 and rejoin the M11 at Junction 7.
For more information contact the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000.

Are you being affected by the closure? Tweet @EDP24

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