The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) announced Monday that Thanksgiving travelers would not be delayed by construction on Tennessee roads during this year’s holiday.
Give thanks for less traffic!!! 🦃🙏🏽🍂
We're halting all construction-related lane closures on our roads for the Thanksgiving holiday from noon on Wednesday (11/23) to 6:00 am on Monday (11/28).https://t.co/Qp8I7ahplR
— myTDOT (@myTDOT) November 21, 2022
TDOT announced in a press release that the department will halt “all lane closure activity on interstates and state highways in anticipation of higher traffic volumes across the state.”
All construction-related lane closures in the state will be stopped from noon on Wednesday through 6 a.m. next Monday, according to TDOT.
“Thanksgiving is typically the most traveled holiday of the year,” TDOT Commissioner Butch Eley said in a statement. “Halting road work during this time will provide maximum capacity on our highways and help alleviate congestion, especially during the predicted peak travel days of Wednesday and Sunday. TDOT’s regional HELP Trucks will also be working throughout the holiday weekend to assist with incidents that may occur along the interstates.”
In some construction zones, workers will be on-site despite the suspension of lane closure activity. Some construction projects will also require long-term lane closures to remain in place to ensure the safety of motorists, according to TDOT.
Drivers should obey the posted speeds in work zones and drive safely. Speeding in work zones with workers present can result in a fine of up to $500, plus court fees and higher insurance rates, TDOT notes.
TDOT’s plan to help travelers this year comes as the American Automobile Association (AAA) predicts that 1.2 million will take a road trip of 50 miles or more in Tennessee, an increase of 12,000 people from last year’s holiday and the busiest Thanksgiving since 2019.
AAA suggests that those traveling for Thanksgiving this year leave early.
“Travelers should expect much heavier than normal congestion Monday-Wednesday afternoon and early evening. Traffic will be lighter during the morning and late evening hours and on Thanksgiving Day,” according to AAA.
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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network.
Photo “Tennessee Interstate 55” by Doug Kerr. CC BY-SA 2.0.