Major lorry fire shuts M11 for 10 hours

Flames on the M11 motorway. A lorry on fire is obscured by plumes of yellow flames.

Aerosols on a lorry exploded after it caught fire on the M11 between Duxford and Stansted Airport - Credit: ECFRS/Saffron Walden Fire Station

Photographs show a major blaze on the M11 after a lorry carrying aerosols caught fire, causing them to explode yesterday evening (July 14).

The fire near Newport broke out shortly before 5pm yesterday.

A 15-mile stretch of the motorway was closed in both directions between Stansted Airport and Duxford after aerosol cans were scattered across both carriageways.

A smoking lorry completely burnt out. On the road: aerosol cans

Aerosol cans scattered over both carriageways of the M11 after explosions and a lorry fire - Credit: Essex County Fire and Rescue Service

Fire crews from Saffron Walden, Newport, Great Dunmow and Stansted, and an incident command vehicle from Hawkwell near Southend, brought the fire under control by 6.30pm.

Nobody was badly hurt in the incident.


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David Bond, fire station manager, said: "The articulated lorry was carrying aerosol cans which exploded and scattered across both side of the carriageway.

"I must praise crews who worked extremely hard to establish a water supply in such a remote location and quickly get the incident under control.

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"I would like to thank everyone involved in bringing this incident to a safe conclusion - and in particular our Control team who received dozens of calls with conflicting reports but still managed to get crews to the scene quickly."

Both carriageways were closed overnight with cars trapped on the M11 guided off the road at the Newport Gates.

The northbound carriageway opened shortly after 4am.

Lorry drivers took enforced rest on the southbound carriageway while resurfacing work took place.

Highways England began to reopen the southbound carriageway shortly after 8.30am.

Traffic camera footage of the M11 near Essex. The road is busy

London-bound traffic was still slow on the M11 this morning - Credit: Highways England

A spokesperson for Essex Police said: "We'd like to thank everyone in the traffic for their patience and our partners for their support in responding to the incident."

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