MDTA advises caution during Irene; may place restrictions on bridge use

Written by on August 25, 2011 in Community Bulletin - No comments

The Maryland Transportation Authority has announced that it has no immediate plans to close any toll bridges and tunnels, but could limit traffic or close bridges and tunnels during the worst of Hurricane Irene.

In Phase I, with sustained wind speeds of 30-39 mph, drivers of house trailers, box trailers, motorcycles, vehicles with roof racks carrying cargo and other vehicles that could be affected by high winds are advised to use caution when using bridges.

In Phase II, with sustained wind speeds of 40-49 mph, house trailers, empty box trailers, campers, RVs, hitch trailers with sides or other vehicles that might not safely cross the bridge will be prohibited from traveling the bridge. The decision is up to law-enforcement personnel.

In Phase III, with sustained wind speeds higher than 50 mph, only automobiles, pickup trucks, flatbed trailers, commercial buses and heavy laden tractor-trailers will be allowed to cross. Tractor-box trailers weighing less than 32 tons will not be allowed to cross.

All traffic could be held in Phase IV with sustained wind speeds greater than 55 mph.
If wind warnings are issued for the Bay Bridge on Friday afternoon or Saturday morning, MDTA will not implement two-way traffic on the westbound span. There could be significant eastbound delays.

If standing water makes roads impassable at the tunnels, traffic will be held or detoured.

There is a statewide information number for traffic and weather conditions. Call 511 or visit www.md511.org.

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