Highways England 4×4 bursts into flames on M62 during road block
Fire and ice…and snow has brought chaos on the M62.
The motorway over the Pennines near Huddersfield became like an episode of Game of Thrones this morning as drifting snow, sub zero conditions and flames, caused havoc for the unfortunate souls stuck up there.
A Highways England 4×4 vehicle became a victim of the Beast from the East after it set ablaze while attempting to help tackle the snow on the motorway.
Meanwhile queues of more than eight miles have developed this morning after the motorway was closed to clear drifting snow over the Pennines and a broken down lorry.
At one point this morning the snow was so heavy that a snow plough got stuck blocking junction 23 at Outlane.
Motorists have been advised to avoid travelling over the tops if possible.
Highways England has confirmed its officers were not injured in the nasty fire which completely destroyed the vehicle.
A spokesperson said: “A traffic officer vehicle caught fire on the eastbound carriageway between junctions 21 and 22, nearer to 22.
“It was part of a road block to allow a crew to grit the area.
“Luckily, there are no reports of any injuries and the vehicle was taken onto the hard shoulder.
“We are currently looking into why it caught fire.”
Huddersfield resident, Emma Bramley and her fiance Carl Gray, were among the thousands of motorists caught up in the M62 chaos this morning.
The couple set off early to catch a flight to Paris at Manchester Airport this evening to celebrate their six-year anniversary.
Emma said the journey had been a five mile-an-hour crawl from Lockwood all the way over the motorway.
She said they were shocked and a bit scared when the smell of burning from the blazing Highways vehicle hit them.
She explained: “We could smell it before we saw it.
“We’d only seen a few cars every now and again on the eastbound side and then a traffic officers’ car came into view and we wondered what was going on.
“There didn’t seem to be anyone hurt but we couldn’t really tell.
“Immediately all lanes were closed off with more traffic officers and every single lane was nose to tail with cars but mainly lorries.”
North West Motorway Police has said the highest point of the motorway between Manchester and Huddersfield is being tackled by ploughs.
In a statement, they said: “Our patrols in 4x4s are working with Highways England patrols and contractors with snow ploughs on the M62 J21 to J22 eastbound, which is currently stopped due to the weather conditions.
“There is currently eight miles of tailbacks so we would advise drivers to avoid this area and not travel unless absolutely essential.”