Thousands of people heading for the coast, sporting events and music festivals at the start of the hottest weekend of the year contributed to road and rail chaos yesterday.
The AA reported roads in the South-west were particularly busy, with the M5 slow all the way from Gloucestershire to Devon and Cornwall, and five-mile tailbacks on the A30 in Cornwall.
The squeeze was in part due to the Rip Curl Boardmaster competition, which began in Newquay yesterday and which 100,000 people were expected to attend.
Meanwhile, thousands of athletics fans travelling to the Commonwealth Games in Manchester also had to put up with delays on road and rail.
And motorists travelling on the M6 found themselves stuck in miles of tailbacks after the Thelwall Viaduct, which carries the motorway over the Manchester Ship Canal, was found to have cracks in it.
The AA said that the M25 was slow because of the volume of traffic while there were also delays for those heading for the Lake District on the M6 in Lancashire.
An AA spokeswoman said: "We would urge people setting out to expect more traffic than usual and to ensure their cars' water levels are OK."
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