Hampshire & Isle of Wight

England v Kosovo: M27 closed near Southampton after van fire

M27 closed
Image caption The westbound carriageway of the M27 has been closed between junctions four and five

A stretch of the M27 motorway near Southampton has been closed following a van fire.

Football fans travelling to England's match against Kosovo - hosted at the city's St Mary's Stadium - were among those caught in the long queues.

Highways England said a combination of the fire and a spillage of hydraulic oil at about 12:00 BST had damaged the carriageway.

The motorway is expected to stay shut until the early hours of Wednesday.

Diversions were put in place on the westbound carriageway between junctions four (the M3) and five (Southampton).

About 150 litres of oil was spilled across three lanes when the van caught fire. There were no reports of any injuries.

Tailbacks of up to five miles have been reported with traffic queuing as far back as Bursledon.

Image copyright Highways England
Image caption Highways England said it expected the congestion to build and advised motorists to allow extra time for their journeys

A broken down lorry at junction eight entry slip added to the congestion.

Rob Whittington, Highways England operations manager, said he was confident work would be completed in time for Wednesday's rush hour.

The Euro 2020 qualifying match, which kicked off at 19:45, is the first full England fixture that St Mary's has hosted since 2002.

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