UPPER CUMBERLAND – Thanksgiving travelers will not be delayed by construction on Tennessee roads during this busy travel holiday. TDOT 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 will be stopped beginning at noon Wednesday, Nov. 23, through 6 a.m. Monday, Nov. 28.
Over a million travelers in Tennessee are expected to drive to their holiday destinations this year.
“This is the most traveled holiday of the year. Halting road work during this busy time will provide maximum capacity on our roadways and help alleviate congestion, especially during the predicted peak travel days of Wednesday and Sunday,” TDOT Commissioner John Schroer said.
While all lane closure activity will be stopped, workers may be on site in some construction zones. Long-term lane closures will also remain in place on some construction projects for motorists’ safety. Motorists are reminded to drive safely and obey the posted speeds, especially in work zones. Drivers convicted of speeding in work zones where workers are present face a fine of up to $500, plus court fees and possible increased insurance premiums.
The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security and TDOT are partnering with law enforcement across the state for the I-40 Challenge, with the goal of having zero fatalities on the 455 miles of I-40 in Tennessee. On the peak travel days of Wednesday, Nov. 23, and Sunday, Nov. 27, the Tennessee Highway Patrol will have troopers stationed every 20 miles on I-40, along with increased law enforcement on all highways.
AAA predicts 48.7 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more during the Thanksgiving holiday, an increase of 1 million travelers over last year. Driving remains the most popular mode of travel for the holiday. An estimated 1,086,352 people are expected to travel by automobile in Tennessee. Nationwide, more than 89 percent of all travelers will drive to their destinations.