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The motorway is shut between junction 29 for Chesterfield, Derbyshire, and junction 29A for Duckmanton and Bolsover in the same county. The road is expected to be closed until at least 5pm, Highways England says.
Derbyshire Police were called to “concerns for the safety of pedestrian” and have negotiators on the bridge.
Diversions for drivers are in place through Chesterfield, reports Derbyshire Live.
Northbound motorists must exit at junction 29 and join A617 westbound into Chesterfield. They’ll then go through the town and leave on the A619 eastbound through Staveley.
Southbound traffic is advised to use the reverse of that route, approaching Chesterfield on the A619.
But the market town is heavily congested as a result.
A Derbyshire Police spokesman said: “The M1 is closed in both directions between J29 and J29A due to concerns for a person on a bridge.
“Negotiators are on scene. We will reopen the road as soon as we can. If you have an EMERGENCY sat in trapped traffic, please call 999.”
Motorway cameras show bumper-to-bumper traffic on the M1 itself, with northbound queues back to junction 28 for Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, and Alfreton, Derbyshire.
Southbound traffic is congested back to junction 30 for Worksop, Nottinghamshire.
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