The Georgia Department of Transportation is preparing for a busy weekend on the state’s roadways.
Georgia DOT Spokesperson Teri Pope said the agency is anticipating more travelers than usual during the holiday week since Christmas falls on a Tuesday this year.
“We are expecting a lot of traffic, not just around Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but of course, the days right before Christmas Eve and right after Christmas Day with all of the traffic trying to get to retail locations as well,” said Pope. “Especially when you think about gas prices falling again, under $3 a gallon in some places in Georgia, vehicular traffic is way up in Georgia this season.”
To help with the congestion this holiday week, the Georgia Department of Transportation will suspend construction-related lane closures on all interstates and major state routes from 5 p.m. today through midnight January 1.
She said even still, drivers need to pay attention when traveling on the roads.
“There could be changes (to the roads),” said Pope. “There will still be barrels out on the road, equipment adjacent to the roadway. Work zones will still be there; they just won’t be active. Please pay attention when you are driving. We want this to be a merry holiday, not a sad one.”
In addition, Pope said that incident management or emergency maintenance-related lane closures could become necessary at any time on any route.
To keep up with real-time traffic, Pope encouraged travelers to use 511.
“If you are going places you have not been a lot, even out of state, 511 is a national thing now,” said Pope. “If you are in a different state and dial 511, it will take you to that state’s information.”
511 is a free phone call from anywhere in Georgia. In addition, the information is found online at www.511ga.org or by downloading the state’s 511 app on to a smartphone.