M5 near Bristol shut for hours by overturned lorry

Scene of the crash on the M5 The lorry crashed near the M5 services at Gordano

A lorry carrying pallets of paper struck the central reservation and overturned forcing the closure of the M5 motorway.

The crash, between the junctions for Portishead and Clevedon, at about 07:00 BST, caused a diesel spillage on the road.

The driver was taken to Frenchay Hospital with head injuries which are not believed to be life threatening.

Two lanes northbound will remain closed until resurfacing work has taken place.

Both carriageways were partially reopened earlier. Long traffic queues have been reported throughout the day.

Driver 'patience'

The Highways Agency said no full closure of the motorway would be required overnight, but some lanes may need to be closed overnight for emergency resurfacing.

A spokesperson for Avon and Somerset Police said: "Closing a motorway is never a decision we take lightly and we fully recognise the impact this has on motorists as well as the communities affected by diversions.

"However, on this occasion we had no other option and we are grateful for the understanding and patience shown by drivers and their passengers today."

Earlier, one of the motorists stuck in the queuing traffic told BBC Radio Bristol that people had been getting out of their cars.

Steve Ashworth said: "Everyone's out and about on the motorway. It's quite a typical British sort of thing - bit of a Dunkirk spirit.

"People are sharing coffee, walking their dogs and just wandering around.

"We are just waiting to see what happens. I think we could be here for some time."

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