M62 Closure Westbound, Greater Manchester, Sunday 24th September 2017

The M62 in Greater Man­ches­ter was closed west­bound between J21 and J20, near Rochdale, due to a 70 tonne crane that caught fire and caused dam­age to the road surface.

At approx­i­mately 20: 37 High­ways Eng­land iden­ti­fied, via CCTV that a large vehi­cle had stopped in lane 1 and it was on fire. Imme­di­ately sig­nals were set by our North West Regional Con­trol Cen­tre to indi­cate to road users that lanes 1 and 2 were closed.

High­ways Eng­land Traf­fic Offi­cers made their way to scene and imple­mented a car­riage­way block, stop­ping traf­fic in both direc­tions. As a result of the fire there was debris across both car­riage­ways, which meant that there could be no lanes re-opened past the scene safely.

Shortly after local fire crews arrived at scene and began to tackle the blaze. Pic­ture from scene below;

Con­cerns were raised regard­ing the Did Gate Bridge which was a short dis­tance from the fire, this was closed by police forces and an inspec­tion of the struc­ture requested.

Emer­gency ser­vices at scene iden­ti­fied that that there was a large diesel spillage of approx. 300 litres as well as hydraulic fluid. This meant that the road sur­face would almost cer­tainly require resurfacing.

Crews at scene con­firmed that trapped traf­fic west­bound would be released past scene; all traf­fic was clear at 22.30.The east­bound car­riage­way was released, how­ever traf­fic would need to exit and re-enter the M62 at J21 due to debris remain­ing in the car­riage­way. A sweeper was requested and the east­bound car­riage­way was re-opened fully at 00:20.

Due to the size of the crane it was iden­ti­fied that a spe­cial­ist recov­ery vehi­cle would be required and upon fur­ther assess­ment there were con­cerns that when the crane was moved it could col­lapse. The spe­cial­ist recov­ery team con­firmed that they would not be at scene until the fol­low­ing day and would require day­light to be able to recov­ery the vehi­cle safely.

While wait­ing for the spe­cial­ist recov­ery team a full sweep of the road was com­pleted and lanes 2 and 3 were re-opened, lane 1 remained closed.

At 12:54 recov­ery was under­way and a lane 1 and 2 clo­sure was imple­mented to enable crews to work. The crane was suc­cess­fully lifted onto the recov­ery truck at 14:26 and recov­ery left scene at 15:14.

Lane 2 was re-opened in time for the evening rush hour how­ever due to road sur­face dam­age caused by the fire a lane 1 clo­sure remained in place. The re-surfacing was com­pleted over night to min­imise the incon­ve­nience caused to road users. The work was com­pleted at 03.55 and the road fully re-opened.

If you were affected by this clo­sure High­ways Eng­land would like to thank you for your patience and under­stand­ing through­out this event.