ALDOT prepares for busiest travel weekend of the year

Published: May. 26, 2023 at 4:46 PM CDT
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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) -It’s been slow and steady traffic for most of the day which has some drivers avoiding major roadways as long as they can.

“it’s backed up now on the interstate,” said Elisha Griffin. “Looks like about 5 or 6 miles.”

Thousands have already hit the road for Memorial Day weekend. With more expected over the next few days, it’s all hands on deck at ALDOT. Staff members have been monitoring traffic conditions on about 150 cameras in their Traffic Management Center.

Some engineers can use the regional transportation operations program to make adjustments on major roadways like Highway 90, Highway 59 from the interstate through Foley and the Baldwin Beach Express by Buc-ee’s.

“We can see the volume and based on that volume those traffic signals can be adjusted to let the vehicles go through a lot smoother,” said ALDOT Public Information Officer James Gordon.

As for interstate travel. ALDOT is using message boards to warn people about traffic congestion or road closures and using their ASAP trucks and tow trucks to help stranded drivers.

“If the vehicle is disabled to the point where it can’t move and it’s in the travel lane, we can push them out of the way or we can help wheel lift them,” said Traffic Management Center Manager Nicholas Hunter.

Hunter also says ASAP truck drivers can help with small maintenance issues like a tire change, jump start, or if you run out of gas.

ALDOT says with all these measures in place it’s still the busiest travel weekend of the year so the best advice for drivers is to pack your patience.

“Leave early is all I know. Because you’re going to run into some traffic if you go through the tunnel or the causeway. You’re going to hit heavy traffic,” added Griffin.

ALDOT says they have extra engineers on call to adjust traffic signals and they’re also bringing in extra asap and tow truck drives from now through Monday.