Pictures: Lorry fire closes two lanes on M5 near Exeter
These dramatic pictures show the scene of a lorry fire that caused parts of the M5 to close in the early hours of this morning.
The fire, on the hard shoulder of M5 southbound, completely destroyed a trailer unit and its contents and was caused by "accidental ignition" according to Devon and Somerset Fire service.
The blaze was reported at 5.45am on the M5 southbound involving an articulated lorry with a trailer.
Both sides of the motorway between Cullopmton and Exeter were closed while the fire service dealt with the fire. Southbound traffic was diverted via the B3181. The northbound carriageway was then limited to lane one due to the smoke but was re-opened at 7am.
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Fire Control received calls from drivers stating that a lorry was on fire on the hard shoulder.
A fire appliance from Cullumpton, one from Middlemoor and a water carrier from Danes Castle attended.
Crews found a large goods vehicle and trailer unit well alight and used one hose reel jet, a main jet from the water bowser and two sets of breathing apparatus to extinguish the fire.
Due to heavy smoke the M5 was closed in both directions for a short time.
A representative from Devon and Cornwall police said:
“At 5.44am this morning Police received a report of a fire on the M5 South bound involving an articulated lorry with a trailer.
The South bound carriageway between Cullompton and Exeter was closed whilst the fire service dealt with the fire. Southbound traffic was diverted via the B3181.
The northbound carriageway was also closed for a time and then limited to lane 1 due to the smoke but was re-opened at 7.00am.
The southbound carriageway remained closed until 7.30am when lane 3 southbound was re-opened.
Approximately 50 vehicles were stationary southbound.”
Lane three on the southbound carriageway has now opened.