DRAINAGE work is scheduled to be carried out on the M65 early next year, after a string of accidents caused by flash flooding on the carriageway.

The spate of recent minor smashes in standing water has caused repeated delays on the motorway, between Junction 10 at Burnley to its end at Colne’s Junction 14.

Lancashire County Council Labour group leader, Cllr Azhar Ali, has called for ‘urgent action before someone is killed’.

The Nelson East representative wrote to the authority’s highways boss Cllr Keith Iddon.

A county council spokesman revealed gullies had been cleared on the M65 between Junctions 10 and 14 in November and further drainage work was scheduled for early next year.

Cllr Ali said: “There have been several accidents on the motorway due to standing water and it’s just a matter of time before a fatality could occur and something urgently needs to be done to sort this out.

“Furthermore, we need Lancashire County Council to work with Highways England to resolve similar problems across the M65.

“Urgent action is needed because it’s just a matter of time before someone dies.”

MP for Pendle, Andrew Stephenson has also offered his thoughts on the matter saying: "Several residents have contacted me raising similar concerns.

"I have raised these with Lancashire Council and I welcome the work which has commenced this week.

"It is vital all necessary work to stop the flooding is completed as soon as possible."

A spokesman for Lancashire County Council said: “We carry out cyclic maintenance of the drains on the section of the M65 we are responsible for, from J10 at Burnley to J14 at Colne, and most recently carried out some work to clean gullies and ensure they’re working.

“We are aware of some locations which are prone to surface water flooding and are due to carry out work in early 2020 to improve drainage in these areas.

“Even in places where drainage is usually good, intense rainfall can overwhelm systems and lead to water standing on the road surface until it has had time to drain away.

“We would urge people to drive to the conditions by slowing down and keeping a greater distance between their vehicle and the one in front.”

It is not yet known what disruption the work will cause for motorists using the M65.

The county council spokesman added: “There could be some lane closures, possibly overnight.

“The work has yet to be programmed and a timetable decided.”