McDonald's reopened 39 more branches in the south of England today - and one is already proving incredibly popular.

The drive-thru in St Albans Road, Garston, opened again at 11am today and people rushed in their hundreds to the fast food restaurant.

Although many will be pleased that McDonald's is back, the reopening has its consequences - as it is having a significant impact on surrounding roads.

Photos shared online at around 1pm, and live traffic feeds, showed St Albans Road, near the A405, at a complete standstill, as drivers queued for a long-awaited burger.

Of course, not everyone heading that way was heading to McDonald's, but there were enough drivers waiting to get in that it caused traffic to pile up.

In both directions, traffic was slow, with one picture showing a traffic jam from the A405 by the Harvester into St Albans Road.

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It was bad the other way too with queues from Sheepcot Lane.

Locals on social media have described the traffic earlier as "horrendous" and called for a traffic system to be put in place.

Police have confirmed they have received a few calls today about the traffic building up.

Thankfully, the situation did improve at the Garston branch - but it has not lasted.

McDonald's has told us it made changes this afternoon to its car park to improve traffic flow - and it seemed to have worked.

But as dinner time approaches, more people are heading to McDonald's and as of 5.15pm, traffic is back at a standstill in St Albans Road.

Watford Observer:

The burgundy lines represent where the traffic is most severe and you can see it turns green after the McDonald's entrance

Watford Observer:

A traffic camera has captured this queue in St Albans Road at 1.18pm towards Garston McDonald's. Credit: Hertfordshire County Council

At around 6pm, footage shows that a broken down car near the Garston branch contributed to the traffic building up.

There have also been queues today in St Albans Road outside the North Watford branch.

Today's scenes come after images from last week showed dozens of drivers queuing to get into the North Watford McDonald's - despite it being delivery only - to the annoyance of nearby residents who were hearing constant beeping and having their own vehicles blocked in.

Watford Observer:

There was frustration in North Watford last week as drivers queued, pictured, despite the drive thru and restaurant being closed

McDonald's, which also announced drive thru openings in North Watford and Bushey today, warned it would close drive thrus if it became too busy.

A spokesperson said: "With restaurant teams adjusting to new procedures to enable safe working and social distancing, things may take a little longer – and high demand is anticipated.

"McDonald’s and its franchisees are working closely with local authorities and the police, and may determine that it is necessary to close Drive Thru lanes if queues cause disruption at busier sites or put employees or customers at risk."

Watford Observer:

Traffic heading towards Garston McDonald's from the A405

The fast-food restaurant is serving a limited menu with a maximum spend of £25 per car, while the company says it has introduced strict measures to keep customers and employees safe.

These include perspex screens at drive thru windows and employees wearing protective equipment, social distancing in kitchens, smaller teams, and ensuring employees are healthy to work.

Meanwhile, government rules dictate that anyone heading to a drive thru restaurant should only be in the company of members of their own household.

Social distancing rules means people must maintain a minimum two metre distance from anyone they do not live with.