Highways England will remove or suspend almost 400 lane-miles of roadworks by 6am this Friday (22 May) ahead of the late spring Bank Holiday weekend.
In light of the recently announced industrial action affecting rail passengers, Highways England said it is not planning on reinstating the roadworks until 6am on Thursday 28 May.
Roadworks are normally reinstated on the Tuesday after the break.
Network Rail workers are set to strike for 24 hours on Bank Holiday Monday over pay and jobs. Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union are planning to walk out at 5pm on Monday, including signalers and maintenance staff.
The strike is likely to cause significant disruption, which could continue into Tuesday as commuters return to work after the break.
Union members will ban overtime during the strike period.
Highways England said it will aim to complete or lift 155 sets of roadworks, leaving 96.9% of its 9534 lane miles free of roadworks. It has issued a map showing the locations of lifted and completed roadworks.
“We are working with Network Rail and others to manage the impact of any industrial action on our customers,” said Simon Sheldon-Wilson, director of customer operations at Highways England. “Motorways and major routes are likely to be even busier than usual if the planned industrial action goes ahead as travelers switch from rail to roads. We anticipate that customers may start noticing a difference in traffic during Friday afternoon and evening, when there could be extra journeys on our roads as the result of the planned rail action.
“During and immediately after the Bank Holiday we will be doing everything possible to manage traffic, such as removing temporary road works where practical. We’ll have extra traffic officer patrols and recovery vehicles on standby, and we’ll keep customers informed with real-time travel information online and via variable message signs,” said Sheldon-Wilson.