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Burst Pipe Repair and Lorry Collision Cause Major Traffic Disruption on the A3

Published on: 24 Mar, 2023
Updated on: 26 Mar, 2023

A lorry overturned on the northbound carriageway of the A3 today. There was severe traffic disruption while the vehicle was recovered. One witness said he saw the lorry driver walking around after the incident, apparently uninjured. Photo Jim Allen

By Martin Giles

The repair of a burst pipe close to the Clay Lane junction of the A3 London-bound carriageway is causing continuing traffic disruption this evening and the situation was exacerbated by an overturned lorry which, apparently, struck a temporary barrier.

Surrey Fire & Rescue at the scene. Photo Jim Allen

This afternoon National Highways tweeted: “The A3 northbound between the A320 and the A3100 near Guildford, traffic has been temporarily stopped due to a collision. There is currently approx. five miles congestion on approach, causing delays of 60 minutes above usual journey times.”

Screenshot of the Traffic England report this evening at 2023hrs.

Earlier a Thames Water spokesperson said: “We’re sorry for any disruption to motorists while we continue to repair a sewer pipe close to the Clay Lane junction of the A3 London-bound carriageway.”

 “On March 3, the pipe, which is in a nearby field, burst and caused wastewater to flow out of a manhole onto the inside lane of the A3. We had to close a lane of the road for the safety of motorists and our engineers and traffic measures have remained in place while we carry out the repair of the pipe.  

“This is a complex repair due to the burst pipe being located next to a large gas main, and electricity main. In the meantime we’re using tankers to remove wastewater from the damaged pipe and we have written to residents to them know what is happening as well as had customer representatives visiting the area to share updates with them. 

“We apologise for any inconvenience this is causing and we’re doing all we can to get things back to normal as quickly as possible.” 

It is understood that the pipe repair work is expected to continue for some time.

A recovery vehicle about to tow the righted lorry away. Photo Jim Allen

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Responses to Burst Pipe Repair and Lorry Collision Cause Major Traffic Disruption on the A3

  1. Jim Allen Reply

    March 24, 2023 at 8:51 pm

    At 14.25 there was a very loud bang. I feared the contractors were trapped in their sewer excavations, when I ran across to them, shouting “You guys ok?” All six of them had vanished. Getting to the fence, I found them running to assist the lorry driver. Broken parts had been thrown over 50 feet away from the wreck. I guess it happened at over 50mph. It had ripped the front axle off.

    So full marks for the contractors’ fast reaction.

    A lesson for all drivers from this incident, when pulling up, when such instances bring traffic to a halt, leave an eight foot space to your side for the emergency vehicles.

    And shame on the drivers today who were trying to queue jump. Every second counts and diesel was pouring across the road!

  2. Robin Grantham Reply

    March 26, 2023 at 8:33 am

    Thames Water lose as much every day as someone leaving the hosepipe on for longer than Queen Elizabeth II was on the throne!

    Editor’s comment: ITV news reports Thames Water “is responsible for losing more than 600 million litres of water a day – almost a quarter of all the water it supplies”.

    • Frank Phillipson Reply

      March 26, 2023 at 9:08 pm

      This is a sewer leak not a water leak.

  3. Brian Holt Reply

    March 26, 2023 at 10:33 pm

    Why was this lane not coned off before the barrier for safety like at most road works?

    This gives drivers a chance to filter in better and let the emergency vehicles use the coned off lane.

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