Rush hour traffic into Birmingham was severely delayed this morning after a lorry struck a road sign near Spaghetti Juncton, ripping the fuel tank apart and resulting in the closure of two lanes of the M6.
Huge tailbacks built up on the south-bound carriageway as the Highways Agency struggled to remove the damaged lorry.
Although the incident happened at about 5am, both lanes remained closed until 7am - when one was re-opened.
Highways Agency spokesman Sam Foxall explained that the nearside lane was likely to remain closed until about 2pm to allow re-surfacing work to take place.
Mr Foxall added: "The lorry appears to have struck some signage, ripping the fuel tank off and causing substantial damage to the carriageway.
"We are advising motorists to choose a different route if they can or to allow more time for their journey.".
The incident compounded the misery facing motorists, who already had to cope with road works on the M6 between Spaghetti and Junction 5 at Castle Bromwich.