A VEHICLE fire has sparked long delays on the M56 near Helsby today (October 15). 

The incident has occurred westbound and Highway North West says the carriageway is blocked between J12  Sutton Weaver and J14  Hapsford. 

The fire service and other emergency services are in attendance. 

As of 6pm, traffic has opened in one lane - with the other two remaining closed. Heavy congestion remains in the area, stretching from Preston Brook to the M53/Ellesmere Port turn off. 

A Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson said: "A hose reel jet was used by firefighters in breathing apparatus to put out a blaze involving a car on the M56. A thermal imaging camera was then used to monitor temperatures. Police and ambulance were also in attendance."

Chester and District Standard: Google's live traffic maps show the current congestionGoogle's live traffic maps show the current congestion (Image: Google Maps)