Update: Orwell Bridge reopens amid traffic tailbacks of up to half an hour

Traffic backs up on Colchester Road in Ipswich due to Orwell Bridge's closure on Wednesday. Traffic backs up on Colchester Road in Ipswich due to Orwell Bridge's closure on Wednesday.

Thursday, February 13, 2014
9:49 AM

The Orwell Bridge has reopened as this afternoon’s severe weather begins to subside.

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"Felixstowe Road and Nacton Road are at a stand still....and it is not even rush hour yet."

Chris Wright, via Facebook

The Highways Agency reopened the bridge, on the A14 near Ipswich, at 5.15pm following more than three hours of closure in response to the strong winds.

Despite diversions via the A1156, A1189 and A1214, tailbacks of more than half an hour have been reported - with worse expected as the peak travel hour begins.

Forecasters have said winds could reach up to 60mph along the coast but the worst of the weather had been expected to finish by about 5pm.

The Highways Agency has said the closure will remain in place until the high winds have subsided.

A spokesman said: “The Highways Agency will continue to monitor wind speeds closely and will reopen the bridge as soon as it is safe to do so.

“Drivers planning to travel during the current severe weather are encouraged to plan their journey in advance and check the latest weather and traffic conditions along the route.”

For more on the Orwell Bridge closures, click here

49 comments

  • Given that this closure was well-known hours in advance, and that Prevent Travel Ipswich are working on Salthouse Street, where most of the diverted traffic needs to go, do you think they, A) cancelled their "off peak" lane closure to allow the traffic to flow at least a *little* better, or B) carried on regardless? I don't think anybody even needs a hint.

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    beerlover

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Raise the walls or fully enclose it, like a tunnel. No closures for wind and suicide prevention.

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    ME

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • And buses were just as stuck in traffic as everybody else.

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    Winston Barrington Jr.

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Half hour delay?? arrived at asda turn off on a14 at 4.40pm having already had a 2 and a half hour drive in atrocious conditions - passed suffolk one at 6.10pm we definitely need northern bypass as soon as possible it will only get worse otherwise

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • What do you think the problem was? Bridge shut... everyone goes through the town on the London Road... 1 in 8 vehicles leaving 5-6 car sized gaps... then come 5.20pm several lorries were doing an illegal U-turn on the top of Crane Hill heading back out of town... this resulted in further delays of the single road into town as the time it took the lorries to do this (never in a single attempt, between 3 and 8) the traffic was getting heavily congested at Copdock Roundabout... for once the dual carriageway heading out of the town past the Robin Drive lights was queued up.Seems many drivers in future should use Hadleigh Road which had been relatively quiet.

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    Ipswich Entrepreneur

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • I don't think Gummer said that, without referring to the article he said "a strategic solution" That could be any number of things, from lorry parks to more permanent diversion signs, who knows..

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    mmm

    Friday, February 14, 2014

  • No, I am not wishing for unemployment, I am wishing for a northern bypass. Any loss of jobs will be a medium to longer term result of not having one and needs to be considered.

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    Esco Fiasco

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Even Gummer now says he supports building a new bypass North of Ipswich so the Evening Star needs to campaign for one now and make the issue an objective for next year's election.

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    amsterdam81

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Oh and sort out your submit button so the same message isn't duplicated over and over

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    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Duke Street lights are a joke, all the cars were still coming through from there on a red light!

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    kev70

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Well said paul e. As you say, Gateway must be loving this. Further expansion at Felixstowe with nowhere for the associated traffic to go!! I can't help but think it will take some major pressure from dock businesses for a northern bypass to even be considered. In a way I hope it isn't, then the shipping lines will move from FXT to the Gateway and we will at least have some relief from the heavy traffic.

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    Esco Fiasco

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Dump the car and try using you feet.

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    Ander P

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • 2.5 hrs to get home from colchester !!! half hour delays ???? evening star wake up and smell the coffee !!

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    Scott Stygall

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • It was all fine, the traffic lights eased the congestion nicely. It was also refreshing to see everybody on foot and their bicycles in the horrific rain and wind. Well done Travel Ipswich!

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    Winston Barrington Jr.

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Were they really still working at salthouse road whilst this was going on?? What was wrong with the old lights? they are all the same colour eg red amber and green!!

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    an idea

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • No, I am not wishing for unemployment, I am wishing for a northern bypass. Any loss of jobs will be a medium to longer term result of not having one and needs to be considered.

    Report this comment

    Esco Fiasco

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Oh and sort out your submit button so the same message isn't duplicated over and over

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Oh and sort out your submit button so the same message isn't duplicated over and over

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Oh and sort out your submit button so the same message isn't duplicated over and over

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Surely they will soon realise something has to be done ...whenever the bridge closes Ipswich STOPS ...1 day is enough of a impact ..worst case scenario ...what if the bridge suffered severe damage for some reason would Ipswich cope if it was closed for any length of time ..1 week 1 month or longer ....priority needs to be giver to a alternative route across the river ...IE Northern Bypass or even a tunnel ...what ever they decide it will have to be done before its to late

    Report this comment

    ukmartian

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Oh and sort out your submit button so the same message isn't duplicated over and over

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Oh dear, stuck in Felixstowe after work me thinks! This may mean missing The Crucible at St Joesph's College. Start time 7:30pm

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    Sparra47

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • No, I am not wishing for unemployment, I am wishing for a northern bypass. Any loss of jobs will be a medium to longer term result of not having one and needs to be considered.

    Report this comment

    Esco Fiasco

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • What a complete fiasco.I have only lived in Ipswich 5 months and have never seen anything like it.the traffic is usually rubbish in rush hour and it is quicker to walk from the Felixstowe Rd to the train station then drive.But today due to weather I drove took 1 hour.My wife took 3 hours getting back from Colchester.Ipswich council sort it out you are a joke.I used to live in London traffic flows there.

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    sistheswan

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • you might not make it home ever if they did not take these precautions.

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    TERENCE MANNING

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Remind me again why we don't need a Northern Bypass?

    Report this comment

    paul e.

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Road and rail infrastructure in East Anglia needs serious investment. Northern Bypass required and M12 at least to Ipswich.

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    Dataminer1

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • How the hell did Colchester Road get placed as the picture for the closure of the bridge! It's no where near the bridge! Guessing that some in Norwich at the EADT wrote this again! How about Nacton or Lanseer Road!

    Report this comment

    Blue and true

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Duke Street lights are a joke, all the cars were still coming through from there on a red light!

    Report this comment

    kev70

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Rarely do so many poms whinge in the same place.

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    Blackeye

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Oh and sort out your submit button so the same message isn't duplicated over and over

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • ThAtS ok liam , all the best . chrisuk 1964 when you press the submit button and nothing happens ,roll the page two or three times.

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    TERENCE MANNING

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Thanks for pointing that out Terence. Nice to see you've learned how to turn Caps Lock off.

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    Liam Dodd

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Star Watch - The route you have suggested is NOT a northern bypass! It was as congested as anywhere else yesterday. It is as congested as that everytime the A14 is closed eastbound before the Orwell Bridge too. What is needed is a new road north of the town, just as the A14 goes south of it. This could link up to the A12 somwhere around Woodbridge then all the extra traffic would be diverted away from the town completely.

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    N M

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • YAY!! I might just make it home in time to see my son before he goes to bed. I hate Ipswich.

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    Liam Dodd

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Yep, Northern Bypass, would have been very handy over the last few months, or years even. And reading about the massive new development at Felixstowe Docks the other day, its going to get worse and worse until someone wakes up and takes our struggling road infrastructure seriously..

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    mmm

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • For info the Valley Road, Colchester Road etc. route is the regular official diversion route for bridge traffic, thats planned and unplanned diversions. Roads that at peak times now are already gridlocked, but still referred to by locals as "the bypass" !

    Report this comment

    mmm

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • I live 6 miles from work in Ipswich and I have stopped moaning about Ipswich traffic jams as I now cycle to work as quicker , so local people get on ya bike

    Report this comment

    dc

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • @ Blue Perhaps because Colchester Rd was one of the posted diversions, as shown by the number of HGVs in the picture.

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    Esco Fiasco

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • paul e. We do have a Northern Bypass, just look at the red lines on the map right now. Try Bixley Road, Heath Road, Colchester Road, Valley Road, Norwich Road. What more can you need, people in Ipswich have nowhere to go so quite happy to have the extra traffic.

    Report this comment

    Star Watch

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Remind me again why we don't need a Northern Bypass?

    Report this comment

    paul e.

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Esco Fiasco - so you are wishing for high unemployment in Ipswich and Felixstowe?

    Report this comment

    in-my-own-words

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • paul e. We do have a Northern Bypass, just look at the red lines on the map right now. Try Bixley Road, Heath Road, Colchester Road, Valley Road, Norwich Road. What more can you need, people in Ipswich have nowhere to go so quite happy to have the extra traffic.

    Report this comment

    Star Watch

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • How the hell did Colchester Road get placed as the picture for the closure of the bridge! It's no where near the bridge! Guessing that some in Norwich at the EADT wrote this again! How about Nacton or Lanseer Road!

    Report this comment

    Blue and true

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • This sort of closure will continue to happen even once the average speed cameras are installed. There needs to be a viable alternative route.

    Report this comment

    A Smith

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Delays of half an hour?? reached asda roundabout at 4.40pm passed suffolk one at 6.10pm we definitely need the northern bypass link the a12 to a14 and problems go away

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Left Martlesham at just after 5pm to head to my daughter's place at Neptune Quay. It normally takes 20 minutes but today took 1hr40 minutes along the A1156. Every time there is any issue whatsoever with the A14 we're hit with this total chaos. I've just about had enough and would happily see my tax spent on a new northern bypass.

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    Captain Z

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Star Watch - I sincerely hope that's a troll. The Thames Gateway developers must be loving this. The bridge closes frequently, Ipswich becomes gridlocked. Northern Bypass needed now.

    Report this comment

    paul e.

    Thursday, February 13, 2014

  • Delays of half an hour?? reached asda roundabout at 4.40pm passed suffolk one at 6.10pm we definitely need the northern bypass link the a12 to a14 and problems go away

    Report this comment

    Chrisuk1964

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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