South Wales Echo

Drivers suffer bridge delays after hay truck catches fire

- David Owens Reporter david.owens@walesonlin­

MOTORISTS heading to and from South Wales were hit by severe delays at the Second Severn Crossing yesterday after a hay truck caught on fire.

Both carraigewa­ys of the M4 were closed for several hours due to the blaze, with traffic being diverted in both directions across the Severn Bridge.

A spokeswoma­n for South Wales Fire and Rescue service said: “We received a 999 call to a lorry on fire at the Second Severn Crossing Toll Plaza with crews from Caldicot, Malpas and Avon responding.

“On arrival crews reported a lorry carrying eight tonnes of hay approx 20ft high was well alight.

“The carriagewa­ys were closed by police due to the amount of smoke blowing across them. Crews fought the fire for nearly five hours using two hosereels jets and a mechanical digger.”

Around 7.30pm last night the hay lorry debris had been cleared and there were no longer emergency service vehicles at the scene.

“However there was a significan­t number of cars waiting to get through the tolls on the Second Severn Crossing.

Ian Downs, who was one of the first on the scene at the front of the queue at the westbound toll when the fire started, said: “Large queues were forming across the bridge as far as the eye could see.”

Ian, who is the breakfast presenter at Sam FM in Bristol, added: “As we approached the westbound side of the tolls we could see incident signs and at around half a mile away we could see something was on fire.

“As we got to the toll we saw that a hay lorry was on fire, with one chap wandering around by the lorry, who we presumed was the driver. There were four fire engines on the scene and two police cars.”

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The vehicle on fire near toll booths at the Second Severn Crossing yesterday
■ The vehicle on fire near toll booths at the Second Severn Crossing yesterday NPAS
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