A SOUTHAMPTON suburb was plunged into “traffic chaos” during the closure of a major city bridge – and residents are blaming a lack of diversion signs.

Redbridge residents reported “convoys of cars” streaming down roads such as Gover Road and Old Redbridge Road while maintenance work was carried out on the westbound A31 last weekend.

One Gover Road resident, Les Harris, said he saw line after line of traffic travelling past his house throughout Sunday while the Redbridge Causeway was closed.

The 88-year-old believes many of those drivers were from outside the city and panicked when they saw the bridge was shut off.

He has blamed poor signage for the Hampshire County Council’s planned diversion route, which takes drivers onto the M271 and round to Totton on the M27.

Mr Harris, a retired organ builder, said: “Drivers from outside the city were coming round the roundabout, saw the road was closed, and went into the first one they saw.

“There should have been more signs telling people to go round and back onto the M271.

“All that was needed was two more signs and it would have guided cars round back onto the motorway.”

He added: “It’s so simple, I can’t understand why they didn’t have enough signs.”

Another Redbridge resident, who did not wish to be named, said: “It was hell.”

The westbound carriageway of the Redbridge Causeway was closed off from 8pm on Saturday evening, until 5am on Monday morning, to allow the county council to undertake essential maintenance work on the bridge.

Councillor Rob Humby, executive member for environment and transport at the county council, said: “For the next stage of works, this coming Saturday night we will, subject to Highways England approval, look to include extra signs and warnings on the M271 and M27 to help drivers avoid the area, and an extra diverted traffic sign on the roundabout to reinforce the direction of the official diversion route. We do apologise for the disruption.”