Ohio drivers urged to exercise patience, plan ahead to avoid frustration with road construction
The summer travel season will be fully underway in Ohio this weekend — and so will more than 1,000 construction projects that could cause headaches for motorists.
The Ohio Department of Transportation is working with contractors to suspend or reduce the size of work zones in many of those areas, at least through this Memorial Day weekend.
But ODOT says that's not possible in every situation. ODOT reports travel delays due to road work are likely on I-75 in Toledo, Dayton and Cincinnati; I-70 through Columbus and Zanesville, and both I-76 and I-77 in Akron.
The agency has some tips for drivers to ease their journey.
Plan ahead and exercise patience
Drivers can avoid frustration by planning their trips ahead of time, ODOT spokesman Matt Bruning said.
“There’s going to be a lot of people out there, whether you are driving through a work zone or not," he said. "So the more patient you can be, knowing you are going to see some congestion, is going to be better."
Bruning said the best way to determine your route is to check ODOT’s website and traffic alerts at OHGO.com. He said similar portals in other states are also helpful tools for travel plans outside Ohio.
AAA predicts 42.3 million Americans will travel more than 50 miles from home during the Memorial Day holiday weekend. That's a 7% increase from the same time last year.
More tips to be safe on Ohio highways this weekend
Bruning said to remember to adhere to the federal "Move Over" law that requires motorists to give emergency vehicles room on the shoulder.
“The law says you must move over a lane if you can safely do so. If you cannot safely do so, you need to slow down. And so that law is put into place in all 50 states. It’s very important to keeping those folks who are on the road safe," Bruning said.
Drivers also should be sober and buckle up, Bruning said. The Ohio State Highway Patrol willkeep a close eye on the roads and crack down on violators.
Last year, 17 people died on Ohio roads during the Memorial Day holiday.