Police say an Audi driver can expect penalty points and a fine after he was caught trying to skip the rush hour traffic on the M1 last night.

The Audi S3 was spotted travelling up the hard shoulder passing queuing traffic between Watford and the M25 at around 5pm.

But the driver had no idea that an unmarked police vehicle was caught up in the motorway traffic too.

The motorist was given a rude surprise when he was pulled over by the police officers from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, and Hertfordshire Road Policing Unit.

Taking to Twitter after the incident, the road policing officer said: "This S3 driver didn't want to wait in the rush hour traffic, so he used the hard shoulder. Unfortunately for him we were sat in lane 1, waiting like the rest of you.

"Driver can expect 3 points and a fine."

The tweet went down well with the unit's followers.

One person said: "Good catch, I bet the other drivers in that traffic jam were smirking", to which the officer replied "They were cheering out of the window".

Another Twitter user said: "Fantastic. Well done. Don't like impatient drivers who think they can get in front of everyone else who just sits and waits."

Just an hour later, the same officers pulled over a white Transit van which they saw travelling in a lane marked with a 'red X' near Hemel Hempstead.

Lane four was shut because traffic officers were in the road recovering a stranded vehicle.

St Albans & Harpenden Review:

Police pulled over this van driver which officers say disobeyed 'red x' signs which meant the lane was shut. Credit: BCH Road Policing Unit

The police say the driver can expect penalty points and a fine - and reiterated that 'X' signs are in place for safety reasons and are not there to be ignored.

Meanwhile this morning, police were called to a Toyota which crashed leaving the motorway at junction 6 for Bricket Wood.

The southbound exit slip road is shut to allow the vehicle to be recovered.

Only minor injuries were reported.