Tailbacks on the M6 after crash involving multiple vehicles

Picture: Highways England
Picture: Highways England
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There are long delays on the M6 motorway after a crash involving a number of vehicles, police said.

The accident happened southbound, just past junction 26 for Skelmersdale, Liverpool, and Southport, at around 3.25pm, a spokesman for Greater Manchester Police said.

Initial reports suggested it involved a car and two lorries, he added.

All three lanes were initially closed, causing significant queues, though one later reopened.

Traffic maps showed delays as far north as the Charnock Richard services.

The motorway policing unit urged motorists to allow extra time for their journeys or to find an alternative route.

In a statement, Highways England said there were 'severe delays' from junction 28 for Leyland to junction 25 for Bryn and Garswood.

"Road users should allow up to an extra hour and a half to travel between these two junctions," it said.

"Recovery and clean-up work is underway and we're making every effort to open additional capacity.

"Currently traffic is passing the incident using the hard shoulder and the nearside lane.

"If planning on travelling through this area please allow additional time for your journey or, if possible, consider alternative routes or delaying your journey until the incident has cleared and delays have eased."

Traffic was also backed up on the northbound side of the motorway, affecting football fans travelling to east Lancashire for the Stoke v Burnley game.