Highways England has apologised after the M5 motorway was shut for several hours on Tuesday (June 26th) after botched overnight resurfacing work went wrong because of the hot weather.
The M5 was closed between junction 21 at Weston-super-Mare and junction 22 for Burnham-On-Sea during the morning rush hour, leading to long delays for commuters.
Highways England said tarmac on the road had not set because of the high temperatures.
Andrew Page-Dove apologised, saying “there are no excuses – the incident on the M5 should not have happened”.
“A full investigation will happen to ensure that this never happens again,” he added.
The closure caused delays on many local roads close to the motorway with congestion on main routes through Weston and near Burnham-On-Sea.
One commuter said it had taken him three hours to travel from Bristol to Taunton – a journey that should take about 50 minutes.
In a statement, Highways England said essential surfacing work was delayed by “heavy traffic flows” and delays in supplies reaching the site.
It added that despite reducing the amount of work to be undertaken “a section of new surfacing had not cooled down enough” to reopen the road to traffic by 6am, “partly due to early morning temperatures rising.”
“We sincerely apologise to everyone who was involved in the disruption this morning and assure them we are doing everything we can to make sure a delay like this does not happen again,” a spokesman said.
“There was clearly an error of judgement on our part and we are very disappointed that this resulted in delays for our customers.”