UPDATE 12.30PM: Crews have started to mop up at the fire ground at Killigworth, as winds and conditions ease.
Crews are expected to stay on scene to monitor the burn, with two water bombing aircraft to remain active.
The M1 Pacific Motorway is expected to fully reopen to traffic by 1pm.
UPDATE MIDDAY: The M1 Pacific Motorway has reopened southbound, however all northbound lanes remain closed at the site of the bushfire at Killingworth.
All southbound diversions have been lifted, however northbound motorists are still being diverted off the M1 at Ryhope and can continue their journey north via Palmers Road or Cessnock Road.
Alternatively, northbound motorists can exit the motorway at Sparks Road or Doyalson Link Road to use the Pacific Highway via Swansea.
Delays are being experienced on diversion routes in both directions as a result of the increased traffic.
UPDATE 10.14AM: The M1 Pacific Motorway is now closed in both directions at Killingworth due to the bushfire. The fire has been upgraded to watch and act.
Residents in the area should enact their bush fire survival plan.
Motorists should avoid the area and delay unnecessary travel.
Northbound motorists are now being diverted off the motorway at Ryhope and can use Palmers Road or Cessnock Road to continue their journey. Alternatively, motorists wishing to use the Pacific Highway via Swansea should exit the motorway at Sparks Road or Doyalson Link Road.
Southbound motorists are being diverted off the motorway at Newcastle Link Road and can continue their journey south via Toronto or Swansea.
Any motorists caught between the closure points are being turned around onto the opposite side of the motorway.
Smoke is affecting visibility in the area so motorists should drive to the conditions, expect significant delays and follow the direction of fire and traffic crews.
UPDATE 9.30AM: All southbound lanes have reopen on the M1 Pacific Motorway at Killingworth where a bushfire continues to burn.
One northbound lane has been closed as fire crews attend to the blaze. One northbound lane remains open but traffic is queued for more than eight kilometres.
Northbound motorists should consider delaying their travel or using an alternative route.
Motorists travelling through the area should expect delays and drive to the conditions as smoke is affecting visibility.
EARLIER REPORT: Northbound motorists on the M1 Pacific Motorway are experiencing significant delays due to a bushfire on Thursday.
One of two northbound lanes has been closed at at Killingworth while fire crews work on the blaze. All southbound lanes have remained open, however traffic is slowing through the area.
Northbound traffic was queued for about five kilometres at 7.30am and motorists should consider using the Pacific Highway as an alternative.
Motorists should also allow plenty of additional travel time and drive to the conditions as smoke may affect visibility in the area.
For the latest traffic information, visit www.livetraffic.com.
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