Various highways closed as farmers protest nitrogen policy
Due to farmers dumping soil, compost, and waste on highways in protest against the government’s nitrogen policy, several highways and on- and off-ramps are closed on Thursday morning. There were two accidents involving multiple cars between Groningen and Drachten overnight due to the waste dump. No one was hurt. Protesters set hay bales on fire on the A7 near Medemblik in Noord-Holland.
The A1 towards Apeldoorn is completely closed between Voorst and the Beekbergen junction, and two lanes are closed in the other direction. The closure will likely last until late afternoon. The public works department struggled to find a contractor to clean up the asbestos-containing waste dumped there by farmers. It found one on Wednesday night, and cleanup is underway, a spokesperson said.
Op de #A1 ter hoogte van Voorst wordt ook hard gewerkt. In beide rijrichtingen kan het verkeer daar via de vluchtstrook versperringen op het wegdek passeren. In de richting van Hengelo wordt de weg nu schoongemaakt. Actuele verkeersinformatie: https://t.co/AkieH72Pmg pic.twitter.com/WoKXqGWSPI— Rijkswaterstaat Verkeersinformatie (@RWSverkeersinfo) July 27, 2022
“We are working hard to clean the road, but it is expected that the contractor will be busy with the work for quite some time. We are now taking into account the end of the afternoon,” the Rijkswaterstaat spokesperson said.
The contractors initially hired to clean the road withdrew due to threats and intimidation, the spokesperson said.
The A7 is closed in both directions between Middenmeer and Abbekerk. The same highway is also closed toward Heerenveen at the Oude Riet service area, but traffic can pass on the hard shoulder. And three lanes of the A28 toward Hoogeveen are closed at the Lankhorst junction.
Farmers also blocked several on- and off-ramps. On the A7 the Freschepalen on- and off-ramp are closed toward Heerenveen and the Freischepalen off-ramp toward Groningen. On the A1, the Markelo on-ramp toward Hengelo is closed.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times