DRIVERS have been warned of delays over the weekend as works continue to repair a defect on a motorway bridge. 

Emergency work will carry on throughout today and part of Saturday on the northbound M3 to repair Shawford railway bridge. 

Repairs began yesterday when traffic was held at the bridge between J11 for Winchester and J12 for Chandler's Ford. 

Although one lane has since reopened, two lanes have remain closed, causing congestion in the area. 

But now a full closure of the M3 northbound will be put in between the slip roads at junction 11 tonight at 9pm to allow for the second half of repairs. 

READ MORE: M3 works at Shawford railway bridge to continue through the night

Due to be complete by 6am Saturday morning, the worl will see traffic diverted off the northbound exit slip at junction 11 and brought back onto the main carriageway at the northbound entry slip road. 

Rob Bell, South East Network Operations Manager for National Highways, said: "We thank people for their patience while we repair the defect and reopen the road.

"The defect was identified during a routine inspection of the bridge and for your safety we established the defect posed a risk to the travelling public so took immediate steps to close the lanes affected.  

“In the meantime, drivers should leave extra time for their journeys or find an alternative route.” 

All three lanes are expected to reopen tomorrow morning with a 50mph speed limit in place.  

However, National Highways says further repairs will be needed to complete this safety critical work.

These are being arranged through overnight closures, starting on Tuesday in order to minimise disruption to traffic.

More details are expected on this work next week. 

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