The M6 toll motorway was closed today as police investigated a security alert which police found to be an electronic cigarette.
The M6 toll has been shut following a "police-led incident. There are unconfirmed reports this is a counter-terrorism operation.
The company which runs the M6 toll road has made a loss of 41 million pounds in a year.
– Midland Expressway Limited statement
It's a nonsense to suggest that the M6 Toll 'benefits no-one'.
The Campaign for Better Transport report has ignored the fact that up to 50,000 customers use the M6 Toll each work day - this is traffic that would otherwise be adding to congestion on the M6 Motorway.
Like many other businesses in the UK, the M6 Toll has been impacted by the prolonged economic downturn
It is the tenth anniversary of the first pay-as-you-go motorway in the UK today - the M6 toll.
When it first opened it cost £3 to skirt 27 miles around Birmingham and has risen to £5.50 since then.
The company which runs the toll say up to 50,000 people use it each working day but Chris Crean, a Friends of the Earth campaigner, says that is not enough to make it worthwhile.
It is 10 years since the opening of the M6 toll 'pay-as-you-go' motorway.
When the road first opened to drivers on December 9 2003 it cost £3.00 to travel the 27-mile route. In 2013, it now costs motorists travelling in cars £5.50 to use the M6 toll.
The toll motorway runs from Junction 3a on the M6 round the North East of the West Midlands and rejoins the M6 at Junction 11a.
Midland Expressway which own and run the M6 Toll north of Birmingham are offering members of the Road Haulage Association a month-long trial to use use the motorway section free of charge during July.
At the moment the HGV cost is £11 and some operators say its not worth spending that much money when other routes are available.
Firms are expected to take advantage of the freebie in the hope that high volumes of traffic may convince Midland Expressway that it needs to lower its prices.
Britain's only privately-run toll road has been branded a waste of money and resources by the head of the West Midlands Transport Authority. Geoff Inskip says using the M6 Toll road hasn't relieved congestion and should be nationalised.
The company which owns and runs the road says the fall in the number of vehicles using the M6 is due to the economic downturn. Phil Brewster reports.
Geoff Inskip, the Chief Executive of Centro, the West Midlands Transport Authority says the pay-as-you go motorway is a costly flop. He says toll prices should be cut or the road should be re-nationalised.
Midlands Express Way Ltd, which owns & operates the M6 Toll blames the economic downturn for the fall in traffic numbers on the road.
The firm says that 40,000 customers choose to use the road every day to bypass Birmingham as it 'provides a reliable alternative the M6 motorway - one of the UK's most congested motorways'.
The offer to members of the RHA has come about following negotiations between the organisation and M6 toll firm Midland Expressway.
A special M6 toll card pass will be issued to lorry drivers who don't currently use the road.
It will run from July 1 until midnight on July 31.
– RHA Chief Executive Geoff Dunning
This offer comes as a result of lengthy discussions between ourselves and Midlands Expressway as to how the road could be made more attractive to RHA members as a viable option.
A trial allowing lorry drivers to have free use of the M6 toll road is to go ahead during July.
The month-long pilot will allow members of the Road Haulage Association (RHA) who do not currently use the road to see if it suits their business.
A man has been injured after his car crashed into a bridge on the M6 Toll in the early hours of this morning.
The accident happened between junctions 5 and 6 on the Eastbound carriage around 3.35am.
Emergency crews arrived to find the car had split into at least three piece after it is believed it crashed into road signs and a bridge
A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said:
– West Midlands Ambulance Service
“The driver of the car, a man in his mid 20’s, was found on scene and had suffered multiple minor injuries, but was extremely disorientated. “He received emergency treatment at the scene and his condition was stabilised.
“Considering the damage to the vehicle the man was extremely fortunate not to have suffered more serious or even fatal injuries."
The Highways Agency is advising drivers to check the weather forecast and road conditions before travelling, as heavy rain is expected throughout the region today.
Simon Sheldon-Wilson at the Highways Agency said:
“I advise drivers to plan their journeys before setting out, check the weather and traffic conditions, leave extra time for their journeys if travel conditions are poor, and delay their journey if the weather becomes severe.
“Rain and spray can reduce visibility and when the road is wet it can take up to twice as long to stop so it makes sense to slow down when it's raining.
"It’s also important to remember that surface water may affect motorways and major A roads where heavy rainfall occurs.”