Thousands of holidaymakers face travel chaos today after a major route into Wales was shut because of staff sickness.
The Highways Agency say they were forced to close the Severn Bride westbound because there was no one to man the tollbooths.
The closure has caused huge delays for thousands of holidaymakers who have had to find alternative routes into the country.
So you CLOSE the Severn Bridge "to protect staff" (who are all off sick anyway!) "and drivers" (who were perfectly content until you started wombling on our roads)
Did it not occur to you just to raise all the barriers and let traffic flow freely?
— Geoff Richmond (@moffats48) August 4, 2018
The Highways Agency said the decision was made to protect staff and drivers but it was met with derision online.
Claudine Whyte wrote: Then open the barriers and let people cross the bridge for free. Biggest rip off bridge ever.
Absolutely #ridiculous Severn Bridge shut into Wales after staff call in sick.
An "unprecedented" level of staff sickness has led to the closure of the M48 Severn Bridge westbound. Motorists are being advised to travel via the second Severn crossing, now known as the Prince of Wales Bridge but we still call it the old Severn Bridge #Travel
— Dylan Lewis (@DesignFourTweet) August 4, 2018
While Dave Birch said: This is bollocks and its one thing that the railways get right: if you dont have staff to man barriers, then you leave them OPEN.
A spokesman for the Highways Agency said: This is an unprecedented level of staff sickness.
If we havent got staff members in crucial roles on the toll plaza it is not safe for our team or the drivers so we have taken the decision to close the tolls.
14:27 update: M4 Second Severn Crossing: OPEN to all traffic.. M48 Severn Bridge: OPEN to all traffic..
— The Severn Bridges (@2SevernBridges) August 4, 2018
We are telling motorists to use the other bridge.
Staff have been diverted to the second Severn crossing to assist staff there and keep traffic flowing.
Around 17,000 vehicles use the crossing each day but they have been told to use the second Severn crossing, known as the Prince of Wales Bridge, instead.
The Severn Bridge was expected to open around 2pm this afternoon. The crossing eastbound has remained open all day because it is not controlled by tolls.
Both the Severn Bridge and the Prince of Wales Bridge, which is around five miles south, charge £5.60 to cross.