Storm Gareth – Operation Stack activated on coast bound M20 between junctions 8 and 9 in Kent

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The high winds have led to severe restrictions in ferries arriving and leaving Dover, leading to hugely reduced capacity, with traffic queueing at the port. This has had a knock-on effect for Eurotunnel traffic.

As a result, Operation Stack has been activated between junctions 8 for Maidstone East and 9 for Ashford.

Operation Stack is where parts of the M20 are closed to queue lorries that are travelling towards the continent, to avoid causing gridlock across Kent’s road network.

All Europe-bound freight traffic should head towards Dover on the M20 to join the queue at junction 8. Local and non-freight traffic must leave the M20 at junction 8.

It is expected that the M20/A20 and M2/A2 approaches will be busy for tourist, freight and local traffic. The diversions for non-freight traffic are:

  • if you’re heading to Eurotunnel, use the M20 and A20 and follow the hollow circle diversion symbol
  • if you’re heading to the Port of Dover, use the A2, M2, A2 towards Dover

Drivers are advised to:

  • plan their journeys and allow extra time if required
  • check travel conditions before setting out and, where it is safe to do so, during journeys
  • make sure you have some supplies for your journey, such as food and water

For more details on Operation Stack and how it works, visit the Kent Police advice page.

Highways England provides live traffic information via its website, local and national radio travel bulletins, electronic road signs and mobile apps. Local Twitter services are also available at @HighwaysSEAST.

Drivers can also get travel advice from the following:

General enquiries

Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.

Media enquiries

Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.

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