This holiday weekend is the unofficial start to summer, and many people will kick it off with a road trip.
AAA predicts nearly 1.2 million North Carolinians will travel at least 50 miles or more from home this Memorial Day weekend, which is a 7.2% increase over 2021.
With that in mind, the N.C. Department of Transportation will be shutting down major construction that could affect travelers because of lane closures along interstates, U.S. and key N.C. routes from this Friday morning until next Tuesday night.
There are some exceptions where construction conditions do not allow for the opening of all lanes. That includes projects where highways are being rebuilt or widened, or where a new bridge may be going into place. Construction work that does not impact the travel lanes can take place over the extended weekend.
Updates on construction projects and incidents such as a crash that can affect a trip can be found 24 hours a day by going to DriveNC.gov.
Whether they are in a work zone or not, drivers are urged to pay extra attention and be cautious when traveling. Make sure all vehicle occupants are wearing seat belts, obey speed limit restrictions, and never drive impaired.
The Highway Patrol and other law enforcement agencies have already started their Memorial Day Weekend Click It or Ticket campaign in all 100 counties. There will be checkpoints at various locations around the state through June 5 looking for vehicle occupants without seat belts, impaired drivers, and other violations.
Here are some additional tips for a safer holiday weekend:
- If you are leaving the state, plan ahead by checking on possible face covering rules or other restrictions that may be in place on the way to your destination.
- Leave early to get a head start and remember that Friday and Monday will likely have the most traffic on the roads.
- Avoid distracted driving and pay extra attention to the road and vehicles that are nearby.
- Check ahead for any potential weather issues for the route you are using.