The 23-mile closure has caused disruption for many Maidstone residents in the past week as traffic has been diverted on to the A20 at Hollingbourne and the delays are potentially set to get worse as the volume of traffic increases across the weekend (8-10 April) during the Easter getaway.
MBC is warning that as P&O Ferries has cancelled services, DFDS being at full capacity and possible poor weather conditions forecast, the weekend traffic disruption is likely to get worse with the increase in the number of people using cross-Channel services from Dover and Folkestone. Many have been queueing for hours over the past few days with traffic management being put in place for cross-Channel freight traffic which must join the queue on the M20.
Unfortunately the ongoing situation on the motorway is having a major impact on local traffic, businesses and residents around the Maidstone area with local diversions in place. People are being asked to avoid using the A20 and M20 if possible but if they have to travel to please allow extra time for their journey. Arrangements are also in place to filter HGVs making local deliveries.
MBC Chief Executive Alison Broom said:
We realise that this has been a very difficult time for our residents and the issues on the M20 have impacted our communities, but we are asking them to not make journeys unless it is absolutely necessary this weekend.
Please think about if you really need to make that journey as if you don’t you will be avoiding what could be potentially long delays and helping to keep our roads clear for essential traffic including the emergency services.
All agencies are working hard to enable freight and passenger journeys to be completed as soon as is practicable and for the temporary traffic management arrangements to be removed as quickly as possible.