DRIVERS may be wondering when the 60mph speed limit will be removed from the M27.

Cones were taken from the 15-mile stretch of smart motorway in mid-February as the major works came to end.

But the scheme is not yet complete.

National Highways have given a full outline of the remaining plans after being questioned by leader of Fareham Borough Council, Cllr Sean Woodward.

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"We are continuing work to calibrate the technology on the M27 smart motorway upgrade between Fareham and Southampton,” said a spokesperson.

“When complete, motorists will benefit from less congestion and improved journey times on this 15-mile stretch.

“Safety is our top priority and so we will not rush these essential preparations. The M27 is operating at full capacity – all 4 lanes are open – and we ask drivers to bear us while we continue to calibrate the technology.

“Cones were removed from the 15-mile M27 smart motorway scheme between junctions 4 and 11 in mid-February. This allows us to commission new technology – including the radar-based “stopped vehicle detection” system – which is an enhancement to help further reduce the risks associated with live lane stops.”

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The spokesperson confirmed that a 60mph speed limit will remain in place during this part of the commissioning process.

They continued: “We said we planned to complete this scheme in Spring 2022 and we are still committed to this timeframe.

“Until this work is completed, 75 temporary CCTV cameras used for the M27 roadworks remain in place alongside the 67 permanent cameras we've installed as part of the upgrade.

“An on-site, 24/7 team can arrange to deploy free recovery service to vehicles which stop in the roadworks.”

A free recovery service is still operating and National Highways has a full fleet of vehicles dedicated to the M27 roadworks working from two locations along the motorway.

This includes four rear impact protection vehicles, four light recovery vehicles and two heavy recovery vehicles.

The speed limit can be varied and controlled manually.

Lanes can be closed using a red ‘X’ if needed – and they have been on at least three occasions in the last three weeks.


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