M27: Pictures of damaged gantry and burnt out lorry released amid urgent assessments

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Burnt out lorry on M27 that hit gantry. Pic: National Highways Burnt out lorry on M27 that hit gantry. Pic: National Highways
Burnt out lorry on M27 that hit gantry. Pic: National Highways

The Highways authority, which assumed control of the motorway scene from police earlier this morning, has warned drivers this morning that junctions 5 to 9 westbound are likely to remain shut until this evening. Drivers are being advised to avoid the area or allow extra time for journeys.

National Highways said the three-vehicle collision and subsequent lorry fire had damaged an overhead gantry and made travelling on the westbound section of the M27 “too dangerous” at present. Urgent assessments and work to establish whether the gantry needs to be removed have been taking place overnight and will continue today after Hampshire Police handed over the scene to National Highways around 4.30am.

Ian Perrett, National Highways operations manager in the South East, said: “We are doing everything we can to get the road open, but our priority will always be the safety of the public, and at the present time we need to establish how badly damaged the overhead gantry is before allowing vehicles to pass underneath it. 

“As a result of yesterday’s collision, a light goods vehicle collided with the gantry and subsequently caught fire while resting against the main support for the gantry. Now that Hampshire Police have concluded their investigations at the scene and the vehicle has been recovered, we are assessing the gantry and a nearby retaining wall that was also damaged to see what work – including the possible removal of the gantry – is necessary before the section of road can be opened again. 

“This is complex work and could lead to the closure remaining in place for a number of hours today. My advice to road users is please avoid the area. If that’s not possible, please allow yourself extra time to complete your journey. We will provide updates of the ongoing work today and will be considering all options to get traffic moving safely past the scene as soon as possible.”

 The initial incident occurred around 12.30pm yesterday when a three-vehicle collision occurred on the westbound M27 near junction 5 for Eastleigh. This involved two cars and an LGV (light good vehicle). The LGV struck and came to rest against a motorway gantry following the collision and subsequently caught fire. 

M27 crash scene. Pic: National HighwaysM27 crash scene. Pic: National Highways
M27 crash scene. Pic: National Highways

Hampshire Police have confirmed the driver of the LGV – a man in his 30s – died as a result of the collision and three other people have been arrested in connection with the incident. Police are continuing to appeal for witnesses to the collision. 

“While the closure remains in place, road users are being asked to follow the official diversion route,” National Highways said in a statement.

You can also contact National Highways by calling: 0300 123 5000 or via email: [email protected][2] 


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