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Resurfacing problem leads to M25 chaos

Contractors on the £6.2bn M25 widening PFI and the Highways Agency were this week reviewing road surfacing procedures after defects forced the closure of two lanes last week.

Two lanes on the clockwise section of the M25 between junctions 21a and 22 in Hertfordshire were closed on Tuesday 14 June after road surface material which was laid overnight “did not set as expected”, the Highways Agency said in a statement.

The design, build, finance and operate contract for the M25 project is held by the Connect Plus consortium, comprising Balfour Beatty (40%), Skanska (40%), Atkins (10%) and Egis Road Operation UK (10%). A Balfour Beatty/Skanska joint venture is contractor for the work to widen the motorway from three lanes to four between junctions 16 and 23.

The lanes were closed for several hours while the contractor resurfaced the affected section of the motorway, and the M25 was restored to full capacity before 1pm, said the Highways Agency.

“We are reviewing our procedures to minimise the risk of this type of incident occurring again and in the meantime our contractor has apologised to road users,” it added, referring to road signage around the affected area.

The contractor refused to comment.

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