6PM UPDATE: Gridlock after woman’s body is found on carriageway of M27

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A WOMAN died after being found on the carriageway on the M27.

Police were called to the incident between Junction 11 and 12 just before 1.30pm today.

A spokesman confirmed that the woman was found dead at the scene.

Motorists faced long delays as the westbound carriageway was closed, although a spokesperson for the Highways Agency said one lane reopened at 2pm.

Tailbacks westbound are past Portsmouth, stretching up to Havant on the A27.

Roads in Portsmouth are heavily congested as people try and avoid the motorway, with the Eastern Road at a standstill.

Eastbound traffic was also slow, with traffic jams stretching across Portsdown Hill and on the M27 back to junction 8.

Downend Road bridge is closed, with diversions in place.

A spokesman for South Central Ambulance Service said: ‘We were called at 1.26pm to reports of a person falling from a bridge over the M27 between Junction 11 and Junction 12.

‘We have sent a doctor, an officer in a rapid response vehicle and an ambulance.’

The paramedics tried to treat the patient, but they were declared dead at the scene.

A police spokesman said: ‘We had a call at 1.27pm today to between Junction 11 and 12 on the M27, near to Downend Road Bridge, Fareham, to reports of a body on the carriageway.

‘Police are investigating the circumstances, and investigations are ongoing.’

Executive member for transport at Hampshire County Council said that officers were working on traffic lights phasing using cameras, but he said there was little they could do when the ‘main artery is blocked.’

He also said that a meeting would take place with the council, police and Highways England to assess how the situation was dealt with.

Cllr Woodward said: ‘The terrible sadness is that this has happened at this time of year.

‘I feel sorry for their friends and family members and the poor people that witnessed it.’