Fuel spill on M5 causing hours of delays

The spill was caused by a collision between two HGVs Credit: Highways England

A fuel spill on the M5 has caused hours of delays for motorists.

Two lorries travelling towards Clevedon collided this morning, spilling fuel and closing two lanes of the M5 betweens Junction 20 and 21.



And it's over!

All three lanes are now open and traffic can continue as normal (although with a 30mph speed limit).

That went quickly, didn't it?


Half a day later and traffic is moving again (albeit with a 30mph speed limit).




Two lanes still closed but road closures are being removed.


Some people's journey times approach half a day:


Traffic has been stopped but will hopefully be back moving in a moment.


More reports of people helping one another through a long day on the M5 Northbound.


Highways England say the Weston-super-Mare sliproad should be open 'very soon'.


Cyclist Beth Crumpton is used to moving very fast but today she has been sitting in traffic.


There is still a long way home for many people trapped on the M5.


Not all heroes wear capes...


Highways England say the M5 will reopen imminently...


A South American caiman was spotted earlier in Somerset - it looks like it was trying to beat the traffic...


For many people trying diversions to avoid the M5 today will have been a bit of an adventure...


With 7.30pm fast approaching, Highways England is confident that the reopening of the motorway is imminent:


Highways England says all three lanes will be reopened at 7.30pm.

There will be a 30 mph speed limit.

The M5 will then be closed at midnight to be resurfaced.

While the road is closed the hard shoulder will remain open.


Some people have decided to make the most of the situation and pretend they are in another country:

6:48PMPeople are now reporting average speeds of less than 2mph.

FYI: People walk on average at 3mph.


Sometimes it feels as though you can't get away from work on a Friday evening.

Sometimes you really can't:


Some people are so tired they already think that it's 8pm...


First Bus say Great Western Rail are now accepting their tickets if anyone decides to get a train home:


People are taking to the trains to avoid the M5 maelstrom.


Some people aren't too stressed by the delay:


Highways England are encouraging people to avoid the M5 if at all possible.


Traffic Northbound is slooooooowly making progress.


If you are trying to fly away from the traffic then there's some bad news. Bristol Airport says you should plan ahead.


Highways England now says they plan to open up 2 lanes by 6pm, with a third lane opening by 7pm.

This means there may be closures overnight as the final surfacing work is completed.


More sporting disruption. Somerset are currently travelling to Bristol for tonight's local derby with Gloucestershire.

Their match begins in an hour!

Somerset say they set off at 2pm. If anyone is used to waiting for long times it's cricketers!

The match is now set to begin at 7pm.


One driver has tweeted what they say is this morning's incident.


This picture taken by an ITV reporter shows traffic is still slow moving.


People are reporting wait times of up to 5 and a half hours now.

FYI: this is around 1.5 times as long as the movie Gone with the Wind.


Somerset Council round up some of the most heavily affected routes.


Some people are starting to get very deep as the long wait takes its toll...


Traffic still appears to be static around Weston-super-Mare:


Traffic still appears to be gridlocked.


Somerset council advice is to plan ahead if using the M5 tonight.


We may have a new leader - one person says they have been in the traffic for 5 and a half hours!


Lots of people trying to avoid M5 but it seems the traffic issues are spreading.


Highways England say resurfacing work is ongoing and Northbound slip road at Weston-super-Mare is still closed.


Some people are sharing their personal times:

FYI at Beijing 2008 Michael Phelps swam the 200m freestyle in a World record 1:42.96 - an average speed of 4.3 miles per hour.

So people on the M5 are in famous company.


A lot of people are becoming bored on the M5.


More public transport being affected as buses stranded on the M5 can't make their following routes.


One driver has taken to measuring the delay.

FYI, Usain Bolt's 100m world record gives him an average speed of 23.5 mph - making him around three times faster than the M5 traffic.

Bolt competes in his final 100m championship this weekend. Credit: PA


It's the start of the Football League season this weekend and teams and supporters are being affected by the traffic.

Colin Read is a Tranmere fan travelling to watch them against Torquay tomorrow.


Paramedic Paul Clarke was present at the scene earlier today. He confirmed there were no injuries and took this picture.


Highways England say resurfacing works are on-going.

The Northbound entry slip road at Junction 21 is also closed.

Credit: Highways England


Some First Bus services are being affected by the tailbacks on the M5.

2:30 PM

The traffic is still build up Northbound and some people are reporting they have been stationary for up to half an hour.

1:30 PM

As well as the M5 itself, the incident is causing severe traffic on a number of other routes as people try to avoid the build-up.


Highways England reports delays could reach up to 3 hours.

The M5 will remain single-lane until 4.30pm when a second lane will be opened up to traffic.

The motorway will not fully reopen until tonight when there is less traffic.

More to follow.