M1 motorway closed as police investigate suspicious package

National Express says 45 minutes is being added to travel times and coaches are being diverted from the area as traffic stretches back more than five miles

The bomb squad is dealing with a "suspicious" package found beneath a motorway bridge on the M1 which has caused five-Mile tailbacks.

Police were called at about 7.30am to a motorway bridge believed to be near Newport Pagnell services.

The force has advised motorists to avoid the area.

Katie added: 'Been stuck in the pocket of traffic trapped by jct15 southbound closure since 8.15am.not expected to clear until 10am'.

Highways England, a live traffic information service, said the motorway remained closed "due to ongoing police-led incident".

"It was found underneath one of the motorway bridges between Junction 15 and 14 at around 7.30am this morning".

Footage broadcast by the BBC showed a bomb disposal robot dragging a black rubbish bag off the hard shoulder, which appeared to have contained a liquid and yellow substance.

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Police say the M1 motorway is shut in both directions on a stretch near Milton Keynes, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of London.

"The M1 is now closed in both directions between Junction 15 and 14, and diversions are in place in both Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire".

Diversions are in place in both Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire, and the road closures are likely to be in place for some time while police and the fire service investigate the matter.

Tim Mayer, a Conservative councillor from Coventry who has been caught up in the delays, said communication from police was "appalling" but people have been trying to make the most of the free time.

Stuart Paterson said he "heard a bang", tweeting: 'Just heard a bang. "Suspicious package dealt with maybe?"

Liz Searle wrote on Twitter people were 'Making some new friends on the M1 this morning, ' alongside a picture of workers standing beside their vehicles.

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