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Posted: December 20, 2016 12:01 p.m.

Georgia DOT restricts lane closures for Christmas, New Year’s weekends

The stresses of the holiday season are upon us and Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) aims to ease traffic congestion and driving anxieties with suspension of construction-related lane closures on interstate highways, heavily traveled state routes and roadways near major shopping areas and tourist locations from 5 a.m. Friday, Dec. 23 to 10 p.m. Monday, Dec. 26. Restrictions will also be in place for New Year’s weekend from 5 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 31 to 5 a.m. Monday, Jan. 2.

“We anticipate heavy traffic throughout Georgia as people visit family and friends, shop and attend holiday events. We are limiting construction and associated lane closures for easier and safer travel,” GDOT State Construction Engineer John D. Hancock said. “Driving under the influence is always an obvious concern - especially during the holidays. But it’s the not-so-obvious distractions – like singing and talking in the car – that you also need to be wary of. Let’s make this a safe, happy time for all.”

GDOT reminds travelers to exercise caution as crews may still work in proximity to highways; and safety concerns may require some long-term lane closures to remain in place. Also, incident management or emergency, maintenance-related lane closures could become necessary at any time on any interstate or state route.

For up-to-date information about travel conditions on Georgia’s interstates and state routes, call 511 or visit www.511ga.org before heading out. Georgia 511 is a free service that provides real-time traffic and travel information statewide. Callers can also transfer to operators to request assistance or report incidents 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Georgia DOT advises motorists that - in the event of a crash or breakdown - to neverget out of the car on a freeway, unless your life is in imminent danger. Pull onto the nearest shoulder as far from the travel lanes as possible and call 511 for HERO assistance in Metro Atlanta, or 911 for medical emergency service anywhere in Georgia.

Georgia’s Move-over Law requires drivers to move-over one lane when a law enforcement, emergency vehicle or construction crew is on the side of the road and displaying flashing emergency lights. If it is unsafe to move over, then slow down below the posted speed. 

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