Part of the surface of the M25 has collapsed, according to traffic reports on Britain's busiest motorway.
Three lanes of the M25 anticlockwise have closed between junction 11 and junction nine in Surrey.
The problems started during regular overnight maintenance work on junction nine and worsened as heavy rain affected the site. The surface deteriorated to the point where the anticlockwise carriageway had to be closed.
The closure came after an unusually large number of motorists suffered punctures along the stretch of road.
The Highways Agency is making emergency repairs to the motorway's infrastructure to allow vehicles to use the major stretch of road again, but the Surrey Roads Police tweeted that the problems would continue for 'many hours'.
Huge traffic jams are affecting the M25 and congestion is building in the affected area near Leatherhead in Surrey.
Road users are being advised by the Highways Agency to follow alternative routes and to allow plenty of extra time for journeys through this area.
Copyright Press Association 2014