UK trafficMotorists face extensive lane closures and risk delays during the Christmas getaway because of hundreds of planned roadworks disruptions, new analysis has revealed. 

More than 400 sets of roadworks for British motorways and A roads are planned for the week leading up to Christmas, including 34 for the M4 motorway alone.

Churchill Car Insurance, which carried out the analysis of Highways Agency data, has discovered the M1 motorway is the second most affected, followed by the M621, M6 and M5.

The A5 tops the A road list of roadworks scheduled between 18-25 December, with more than half of its 20 disruptions expected to cause delays of up to half an hour. The A12, A1, A421 and A34 are also all affected by roadworks.

173 of those roadworks will involve lane closures, and 134 will see carriageway closures. There are speed restrictions on 20 of them and 15 have full contraflow systems.

‘Significant delays inevitable’

With extra traffic on the roads because of the Christmas break, Churchill says traffic jams and delays around these roadworks is almost guaranteed.

“Our analysis shows that there are hundreds of road disruptions planned in the week before Christmas,” said its head of car insurance Steve Barrett.

“Motorists should plan their journeys in advance and consider alternative routes, allowing more time for their travel, as there will inevitably be significant delays.”

Barrett also picked out the M40 as a particular potential hotspot.

“Anyone travelling between London and Birmingham on Christmas Eve should be wary of the M40 as the motorway has four planned road disruptions which will likely cause severe delays of more than 30 minutes.”