ROADWORKS are causing long delays for commuters tonight - just days into eight weeks of planned work.

Southern Water has closed a section of the B3354 Colden Common Main Road to replace old water mains with a new 1km section of new pipes from the junction with Portsmouth Road to the junction with Church Lane.

But this has caused massive delays for people travelling in the Eastleigh and Fair Oak areas.

As previously reported by the Daily Echo, the works have also seen bus operators cancel bus services.

Fair Oak resident Jan Combes was one of many caught in traffic this evening.

A ten minute journey from Sainsbury's in Eastleigh to her home took one hour.

She said: β€œIt was chaos, absolute chaos.

β€œI cannot understand how Southern Water can justify shutting a road like this for eight weeks. Eastleigh will lose business and so will the pubs along the road. There is no easy way to bypass the road.”

She added that it would be better to have at least one lane open.

The official diversion route is the Main Road, Otterbourne Hill, Allbrook Way, Woodside Avenue, Leigh Road, Romsey Road, Bishopstoke Road, Fair Oak Road, Alan Drayton Way, Eastleigh Road and Winchester Road.

Hampshire Police said that it has been receiving complaints from Owslebury villagers about high levels of traffic through the village, especially heavy goods lorries.

A Southern Water spokesman said: "We appreciate that road closures like this will create disruption and we apologise for the frustration it has caused people.
"We took time with the council to carefully plan this essential replacement of 1km of water main and contacted nearby businesses and residents before starting.
"Our aim has always been to minimise the impact of the scheme and our contractor is working extended hours, seven days a week to get it finished as quickly as they can.
"Consequently the work, which was due to continue into April, is now expected to be completed by the end of February and we can assure people that we are endeavouring to get things back to normal as soon as possible."