TRAFFIC ALERT: Use Alternate Evacuation Routes Be Safe!

Press release from Georgia Department of Transportation

Be Safe! Exercise Caution! Pack Patience! 

ATLANTA, GA – Georgia interstates continue to see significant traffic volume and congestion as a result of evacuation orders in Florida and in-state due to Hurricane Irma.  Georgia DOT advises motorists to use other evacuation routes experiencing less congestion.

Current traffic conditions include:

  • I-75 NB between Macon and Atlanta has been and is expected to continue to see severe congestion.
    • Area has seen extreme congestion due to high volume and crashes; expect speeds less than 10 mph.
    • Drivers should consider alternate state routes between Macon and Atlanta Northbound.
  • I-75 NB between Florida and Macon is currently experiencing pockets of congestion; volumes are in excess of double what is typical.  
    • Immediately south of Macon – pockets of congestion with average speeds below 25 mph.
    • Other areas of congestion around Tifton and Valdosta – speeds below 35 mph.
  • I-16 WB travel speeds remain above 60 mph, no major issues at this time
  • I-95 NB along the coast has and is expected to experience congestion particularly in the Savannah area and heading into South Carolina.  
    • Consistent congestion on I-95 beginning near Riceboro (exit 67). Average speed from Riceboro (exit 67) to I-16 Interchange (exit 99) below 35 mph.
  • I-475 expect speeds around 45-50mph

Residents leaving areas expected to be impacted by Hurricane Irma are encouraged to use numerous routes throughout the state that provide alternatives to the already-congested interstates. See map below.

Additional Coordinated Highway Assistance and Maintenance Program (CHAMP) operators have been deployed to I-95 and I-75 between Florida and Macon to provide motorists assistance and traffic control. Highway Emergency Response Operators (HEROs) will assist with contraflow and traffic management on I-16.

Motorists are reminded that Georgia DOT will contraflow from Dublin to Savannah beginning at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning. A median crossover on I-16 east of I-95 will cross traffic over onto I-16 eastbound lanes to travel westbound.  All eastbound access at interchanges will be blocked from Dublin to Savannah on I-16 during the contraflow process.  Travelers may exit contraflow lanes at the following locations:

  • Exit 143 @ SR 30 / US 280 (Exit to Pembroke at Ellabell, Georgia)
  • Exit 116 @ SR 73 / SR 301 (Exit to Statesboro and Claxton at Metter, Georgia)
  • Exit 104 @ SR 23 / SR 121 (Exit to Metter and Reidsville at Metter, Georgia)
  • Exit 90 @ SR 4 / US 1 (Swainsboro, Georgia)
  • Exit 71 @ SR 15 / SR 78 (Exit to Soperton and Adrian at Soperton, Georgia)
  • Exit 67 @ SR 29 (Soperton, Georgia)
  • Exit 51 @ SR 31/US319/US441 (Dublin, Georgia)

A crossover on I-16 at SR 26 (MP 38) in Laurens County will direct traffic back to regular westbound lanes prior to arrival in Macon. All westbound exits will remain open after Dublin.

For additional information and resources:

  • For current roadway conditions, or to report roadway conditions: 511ga.org or dial 511
  • For roadway information and evacuation routes, visit Georgia DOT at dot.ga.gov
  • For emergency information and updates: GEMA/HS at gema.ga.gov
  • For information on emergency shelters, visit American Red Cross at www.redcross.org
  • For news alerts and information from throughout the state, visit www.GPBnews.org
  • For a HERO or CHAMP Operator: Dial 511 and request assistance

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