Minimal congestion greets UK motorists on Easter Saturday

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Motorists faced a traditionally busy Easter Saturday on the roads as travellers headed off for the bank holiday weekend.

According to the AA, there were some delays on the motorways, however congestion was minimal and far less of a problem than it was on Good Friday.

The organisation predicted a total of 27.6m journeys will be made this weekend, as people choose cars over train to avoid engineering works.

A crash on the M6 on Saturday caused delays of up to 40 minutes, while the M25 remained slow in the west around Heathrow and in the east near Dartford.

AA president Edmund King said routes to the south-west were clearer than they were on Good Friday, although there were some delays on the M4 and M5 near Bristol.

“I have driven 176 miles in three-and-a-half hours from Hertfordshire to Old Trafford and charged the car on the way,” King said.

“Overall, the picture is busy but generally the traffic is flowing.”

The RAC suggested the best time to hit major roads was after 3pm on both Saturday and Sunday, and either before 10.30am or after 6.30pm on Monday to avoid major queues.

One issue that could blight travel plans for holidaymakers this weekend is fuel shortages, but the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA), which represents independent forecourts, said it was not aware of any widespread problems.

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“We are aware of protests at several fuel supply sites, however, the majority are unaffected,” Gordon Balmer, the executive director of PRA, said.

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“Fuel suppliers are working hard to ensure fuels are being delivered as quickly as possible and our members are working closely with them and following their advice.”

However, one woman in east London said she had visited five different stations before she was able to fill up.

“I’ve managed to get some now at a Texaco petrol station but only two pumps were working,” she said.

Network Rail is scheduled to carry out 530 engineering projects, including the closure of the west coast mainline between London Euston and Milton Keynes until Tuesday to upgrade the existing line and work on HS2.

Those travelling across the Channel faced significant disruption after P&O Ferries suspended all passenger services on its Dover-Calais route before the weekend while ships remain docked owing to safety concerns.

Passengers attempting to jet off also encountered cancellations, with British Airways and easyJet grounding about 100 services between them.

The airlines cite staff shortages caused by coronavirus.

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