M25 closure: Drivers urged to ignore sat navs ahead of weekend traffic chaos with 'unprecedented' changes

Drivers are being urged to ignore their sat navs or they could face traffic chaos ahead of the M25 closure taking place over the weekend.

The M25 will close in the daytime for the first ever at the end of the week to make vital repairs, with the work being described as “unprecedented”.

The closure will affect a five-mile stretch of the M25 in both directions between junctions 10 (A3 Wisley) and 11 (A320 Chertsey Interchange) from 9pm on Friday, March 15 to 6am on Monday, March 18.

National Highways have now issued an alert to drivers, instructing them to ignore their satellite navigation systems and only follow official diversion routes.

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The M25 preparing for road works this weekend

The M25 is already being prepared for road works this weekend


It has been estimated that motorists who follow signs for diversion routes on A-roads will have an hour added to their usual journey times between Junctions 10 and 11, which will be shut in both directions.

Experts have warned that motorists could face even greater levels of traffic if they attempt to use their sat navs to find a loophole in the traffic trends.

Jonathan Wade, project lead at National Highways, said how well the area copes with the M25 closure will partly depend on whether drivers stick to official diversions.

He added: “How many people are going to take the initiative and try and use sat navs?

“There’s probably a greater risk of congestion by people just doing their own thing and thinking they can perhaps beat the signs and find a shorter or quicker route.

“That will cause further congestion on some of the key junctions so please avoid doing that if at all possible,” he told the PA news agency.

It will be the first scheduled daytime closure of the M25 on all lanes since it was first opened in 1986.

National Highways will demolish the Clearmount bridleway bridge and install a large gantry to improve traffic and reduce pollution caused by the congestion.

Louise Thomas, motor expert at car insurance, highlighted how as many as 200,000 drivers could be disrupted by the closures.

She continued, saying: “Not only will this impact those driving in and out of London, but also those heading to Gatwick and Heathrow airports.

“Due to the disruptions, drivers are being encouraged to not travel unless completely necessary during this time.

“But for those who do need to travel, prepping ahead of your journey could be hugely beneficial.”


Sat nav

Drivers are being told to ignore their sat navs


The carriageway between J9 and J11 carries between 4,000 and 6,000 vehicles per hour in each direction between 10am and 9pm on a weekend.

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