THE emergency sewer repair works which saw Newbury grind to a standstill last night could take up to 10 days to fix, Thames Water have confirmed.
Temporary traffic lights were installed between Strawberry Hill and Old Bath Road last night and saw traffic chaos in the town.
Some motorists reported it taking them up to two hours to get from Northcroft Leisure Centre to Speen, while it took others half an hour just to exit the Parkway car park.
One person caught up in the bedlam was Yvonne Soulby, who said: "Yes it was horrid it took us 45 mins to get from Bartholomew Street to the clock tower. Complete grid lock."
Tracey Double added: "Just under two hours to get from Northcroft to Newbury racecourse."
Thames Water says the pipe is between three and four metres below the road and needs to be fixed urgently to prevent the sewage which flows through it seeping out and contaminating the surrounding environment.
A spokesperson for the company said: “We’re sorry for any hold-ups the temporary lights are causing.
"We started emergency work to repair a collapsed sewer on Thursday, which we discovered while clearing a blockage from the pipe, and expect the job to take a week to ten days.”