A1(M) Hatfield Tunnel reopens

HATFIELD Tunnel has reopened fully this morning with all speed restrictions lifted.

The A1(M) stretch between junctions three to four had been restricted to 40mph for the last two years, but as of today (Monday) drivers are able to travel through the tunnel at the national speed limit.

More than 86,000 drivers use the tunnel, which is just 0.7 miles long, every day.

The refurbishment project to improve lighting, ventilation and fire safety systems which began in 2009 have all been completed.

Road minister Mike Penning said: “The improvements made at the Hatfield Tunnel offer real journey time reliability and safety benefits to the tens of thousands of motorists and hauliers who use this busy part of the A1(M) every day.

“The upgrade brings the tunnel up to the highest safety standards. Improved lighting, ventilation and fire safety systems have been installed - and new CCTV cameras will help Highways Agency traffic officers keep the motorway moving. The investment will also reduce the risk of unplanned maintenance closures.

“The Highways Agency and its contractor have finished the project on time, working hard to keep disruption to a minimum and to keep people informed.

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“I would like to thank road users and local people for their patience during the road works and for the extra care with which they have driven through the tunnel.

“I would also like to congratulate the safety record that the project team have achieved – more than 900,000 man hours without an accident and a RoSPA Gold Award for Occupational Health and Safety.”