THE Highways Agency has warned the QEII bridge could be forced to close tomorrow if the forecasted high winds are persistent enough.

There are currently no plans to close the crossing, but in recent months when the bridge has had to close, traffic chaos has ensued in the west of Thurrock, causing long delays on local roads and the A13 and M25.

Motorists using the bridge are being urged to be extra cautious and prepare for disruption.

Met Office forecasters based in the Agency’s National Traffic Operations Centre in Birmingham are predicting very strong South to South-Westerly winds of 50 to 60mph will be prevalent during most of Wednesday.

Dom McLeman, Highways Agency Emergency Planning Manager in the South East said: “We are asking drivers to check traffic and weather conditions before setting out and to allow extra time for their journeys. In the event of persistent high winds we may need to close certain bridges to traffic for a period.

“If you are driving, please be aware of sudden gusts of wind and give high-sided vehicles, caravans, motorbikes and bicycles plenty of space.”