Published: 12:15, 14 November 2017 |
Updated: 20:57, 14 November 2017
A motorway has reopened after a lorry carrying hay burst into flames following reports of a series of explosions - but lengthy delays remain.
Witnesses reported hearing loud bangs before the LGV caught alight under a bridge on the M2 near Blue Bell Hill.
Traffic is still moving slowly, but three out of four lanes of the M2 and the A229 at Blue Bell Hill are now open.
Robin Chappell, who was in the area at the time, tweeted to say there had been a "ground breaking explosion" as the lorry caught fire under a bridge.
A user called Tom added: "Chatham junction motorway stationary in both directions I have heard big explosion before smoke appeared."
Video: The M2 after a lorry caught fire. Video: Angie Peach
Another witness said there had been four explosions under the bridge.
The fire service said the blasts came from the tyres as they burst from the heat of the fire.
Crews used hose reel jets and main jets to tackle the flames, which engulfed the truck and trailer of the HGV.
The trailer is believed to have contained 26 tonnes of hay.
At 4pm, a spokesman said: "The fire on LGV is now out, crews have been working hard to target the hot spots in the hay bales using hose reel jets, to make sure the fire is fully out. The lorry and trailer have been completely destroyed by fire."
The spokesman said earlier: "Crews are making good progress in tackling the fire and are working hard to extinguish it."
Police and fire crews were called to the scene at around 11.45am.
No injuries have been reported and the cause of the fire is not yet known.
Police spokesman Jordan Bluer said earlier: "We were called at 11.44am on Tuesday to a report of a lorry on fire below a bridge on the M2 Coastbound at Blue Bell Hill.
"Officers are currently at the scene alongside the Kent Fire and Rescue Service.
"Both directions of the M2 are currently closed at Junction 3.
"The bridge at Blue Bell Hill, which runs over the M2, will also be closed due to the fire and will need to be assessed before being reopened."
At 6.12pm Highways England said all lanes reopened, but there were four miles of queuing traffic waiting to get through.
The scene was finally clear by 8.50pm.
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
Your No1 guide to getting married in Kent. From dresses to discos and venues to veils, we've got everything you could possibly need for your big day
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating!
PLUS, register for free!.
Read our pick of the best holiday destinations. Whether its a weekend break, or something a little bit longer, we have reviewed a wide range of holidays.