Highways England are offering a helping hand to people planning on travelling over the Easter break, with the M62 and M1 near Leeds set to benefit.
The company, who are responsible for modernising, maintaining and operating England’ major motorways A roads, are lifting 300 miles of roadworks throughout the country to make travelling as smooth as possible.
They estimate that more than one billion miles will be traveled in total in the run-up to the bank holiday and Highways England will be working around the clock to ensure 99 per cent of motorways and major A roads are roadwork-free in time for Easter.
Highways England’s customer service director, Melanie Clarke, said: “We’re doing everything we can to make journeys as smooth as possible this Easter and that’s why we’re keeping 99 per cent of the road network we manage, free from roadworks.
“Safety is our top priority and we know from experience that almost half of breakdowns can easily be avoided if motorists carry out simple vehicle checks before setting off over this period.”The motorway and major A-road network will be free of roadworks from 6am Thursday, March 29 until 12.01am on Tuesday, April 3.
Highways England traffic officers will be working around the clock to help people who get into difficulty after research shows almost half of all breakdowns are caused by simple mechanical problems which could be avoided with simple checks and nearly a quarter are caused by tyre problems.
Before they set off, Highways England is urging motorists to:
• Check fuel: Make sure you have enough to get to your destination.
• Check tyres: check your tyre pressure and the condition of your tyres, including the spare. Look out for cuts or wear and make sure the tyres have a minimum tread depth of 1.6mm, which is the legal limit.
• Check engine oil: Use your dipstick to check oil before any long journey, and top up if needed. Take your car back to the garage if you’re topping up more than usual.
• Check water: To ensure you have good visibility, always keep your screen wash topped up so you can clear debris or dirt off your windscreen.
• Check your lights: If your indicators, hazard lights, headlights, fog lights, reverse lights or brake lights are not functioning properly, you are putting yourself at risk. In addition, light malfunctions can be a reason for your vehicle to fail its MOT.
Highways England also has a series of specialist videos online to help people carry out basic vehicle checks before they set off on their travels. The videos can be viewed online here: http://think.direct.gov.uk/carchecks.html
Highways England is also urging drivers to stay safe this Easter by adhering to motorway signage, including the red X signals on smart motorways. Highways England close lanes for a reason and drivers ignoring red X signs put themselves and others at risk. Those wishing to find out more about driving on smart motorways can head online to: www.gov.uk/guidance/how-to-drive-on-a-smart-motorway for further information.
Drivers planning to use the Dartford Crossing are reminded to pay Dart Charge in advance or by midnight the day after crossing.
More information can be found on our website or by calling our information line (0300 123 5000) they can keep up to date with conditions on the roads.
For more detailed information on how to carry out your vehicle checks, search Think!
Roadworks completed in Yorkshire:
M1 Jct 45 (near Leeds) Junction improvement completed for Easter period.
M62 (Jct 33 to Jct 34) – Leeds2 mile(s) of roadworks completed for Easter period.
Roadworks lifted in Yorkshire:
M62 (Jct 32 to Jct 30) – Leeds3 mile(s) of roadworks lifted for Easter period