Published: 10:59, 15 April 2009
| Updated: 10:59, 15 April 2009
Operation Stack is back in force today as French fishermen continue to blockade ports across the Channel.
Junctions 8-9 (Leeds Castle to Ashford) were closed coastbound around 6.15am, with lorries being parked up and other motorists diverted.
Fishing boats are being used to block the ports of Calais, Boulogne and Dunkirk in a dispute over EU fishing quotas.
The action began on Tuesday at Boulogne, and spread to the other two ports later in the day, trapping some ferries on their berths, and resulting in other services being cancelled.
Calais re-opened at 10pm, allowing some ferries to enter and leave, but the port was blocked again at 6am today.
Some ferries were already in the Channel on their way to France. Operators will now have to decide whether to bring them back to Dover, or wait off the French coast in the hope that the dispute is settled.
Phase two of Operation Stack was initially launched on Tuesday just before the afternoon rush-hour. Parts of the M20 are used to queue lorries that are travelling towards the continent, the aim being to avoid gridlock across Kent's road network.
Hauliers, lorry drivers and motorists are being urged to consider whether journeys are necessary and, where possible, to avoid travelling. People living around the Ashford and Maidstone areas should also consider alternative routes to the M20.
Eurotunnel will continue to take freight and people who have already secured bookings. Tourist traffic is advised to contact their ferry operators before travelling, but Eurostar services will not be affected.