M5 Partial Closure Southbound, Gloucestershire, Thursday 27 July 2017

On the M5 south­bound in Glouces­ter­shire just south of Tewkes­bury, two lanes were closed between junc­tions 9 and 10 after two HGVs col­lided and spilt a large vol­ume of diesel onto the road surface.

At 09:41, our col­leagues in the Glouces­ter­shire Road Polic­ing Unit alerted
High­ways Eng­land to reports that a HGV trav­el­ling south­bound on the M5 had
col­lided with the rear of sec­ond HGV that was trav­el­ling in front of the first. Our regional con­trol room located near Avon­mouth imme­di­ately dis­patched our Traf­fic Offi­cer crews to the scene.

Our Traf­fic Offi­cers arrived at the scene promptly and quickly set about sup­port­ing units from Glouces­ter­shire police, Glouces­ter­shire Fire and Res­cue and the South West Ambu­lance Ser­vice. Incred­i­bly, the dri­ver of the HGV suf­fered only a minor injury.

There was exten­sive dam­age to both vehi­cles, a sub­stan­tial vol­ume of debris strewn across the car­riage­way and a high vol­ume of diesel leak­ing onto the road sur­face. But despite these chal­lenges, we were still able to keep one lane open past the scene of the col­li­sion and were able to avoid hav­ing to close the motorway.

Recov­ery trucks were directed to attend the scene to remove the two HGVs.
High­ways Eng­land also dis­patched spe­cial­ist Inci­dent Sup­port Units to clear the debris and treat the diesel spillage. The quick work of our spe­cial­ist units
pre­vented the diesel from dam­ag­ing the road sur­face and avoided the need to have to re-surface the road. Re-surfacing would have kept the two lanes closed for much longer.

Despite these efforts, there was approx­i­mately 1½ miles of queu­ing traf­fic by 10:15 and by 10:42, these queues had reached as far back as junc­tion 8. By 11:28, there was approx­i­mately 4 miles of very slow traf­fic and by 13:47, this had grown to
approx­i­mately 6 miles.

Our National Traf­fic Oper­a­tions Cen­tre based in Quin­ton near Birm­ing­ham was quick to set sig­nage at the road­side to warn of the acci­dent and the long delays. Our National Inci­dent Liai­son Offi­cers exchanged Twit­ter mes­sages with our cus­tomers, pub­lished reg­u­lar updates on our web­site and our Cus­tomer Con­tact Cen­tre was on-hand to answer your calls.

Recov­ery trucks had removed both of the HGVs by 12:41 and with these removed, our spe­cial­ist Inci­dent Sup­port Units were able to get to the road sur­face beneath them to treat the remain­der of the diesel spillage. By 15:03, we had treated the diesel spillage, cleared all of the debris and re-opened the closed lanes.

High­ways Eng­land would like to thank our cus­tomers for their patience and under­stand­ing through­out this incident.