Rush hour motorists are facing major delays due to severe flooding on the A19.
A burst water pipe around 100metres north of Holystone roundabout had left parts of the northbound carriageway closed.
Work has now resulted in one lane open in both directions, although speeds are down to 5mph in places.
Officials from Northumbrian Water are on the scene to fix the problem while Northumbria Police are managing traffic levels.
Motorists are being advised to avoid the area, with reports of heavy traffic on Backworth Lane between Seghill and Backworth and on the approaches to Killingworth and Holystone roundabouts.
The problem has also resulted in a loss of water supply to local businesses and homes.