Officials made the decision to reopen the road at 2am today after vital resurfacing work and investigations into the horrific accidents between junction 36 and 34 on the southbound carriageway, involving lorries, had been completed.
It was a day of misery on the motorway for drivers who faced lengthy delays and huge tailbacks following the incidents which saw a lorry hit the central reservation near junction 34 around 4am yesterday, rupturing its fuel tank and spilling diesel on to the road surface.
The second incident occurred just two hours later, close to junction 35 at Carnforth, and involved three lorries, also leading to major diesel spillages. This incident also led to a large diesel spillage and the road needed to be resurfaced once the police investigation had been completed.
The southbound stretch of the motorway remained closed all day while two lanes of the northbound carriageway were opened.