The accident happened between junctions 24 in Ashton-in-Makerfield and 23 in Haydock at around 1.20pm.
Police briefly closed lanes 2 and 3 to allow the stranded vehicles to be recovered.
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The lanes have been reopened, but lane 1 has now been closed to allow the stricken vehicles to be moved safely from the hard shoulder.
Highways are reminding drivers to obey the closure signals which have been put in place on the approach.
No injuries have been reported.
The collision came just minutes after the M6 reopened after an earlier crash near Wigan closed the carriageway for seven hours.