TDOT Halts Highway Construction For Busy Holiday Travel Period

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Road construction will not slow travelers’ busy Christmas and New Year’s travel holidays.  The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) is once again halting all lane closure activity on interstates and state highways in anticipation of higher traffic volumes across the state.  
 
No temporary lane closures will be allowed for construction on Tennessee roadways beginning at 6 a.m. on Saturday, through 6 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2013.  

“Two million drivers are expected to travel Tennessee roadways during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, and we want to do everything possible to minimize delays,” said TDOT Commissioner John Schroer. “We also want everyone to arrive at their destinations safely – so buckle up, reduce your speed, avoid distractions, and always designate a sober driver.”

Except for a few long-term closures which must remain in place for safety, all construction related closures will be suspended during the holiday period.  Workers may still be on site in some construction zones.  Drivers should obey all posted speed limits, particularly in construction areas.  Slower speeds are necessary in work zones due to the temporary layout of the roadway and will be enforced.  Drivers convicted of speeding through work zones where workers are present face a fine of $250 to $500, plus court fees and possible increased insurance premiums. 

“If you and your family are traveling during this holiday period, please do your part to increase safety for everyone by obeying the rules of the road,” said Governor’s Highway Safety Office Director Kendell Poole.  “Drivers will see an increased law enforcement presence on Tennessee’s roadways with a particular focus on stopping impaired drivers.”

AAA predicts holiday travel will increase nearly two percent in Tennessee this year, with two million expected to travel by automobile in the volunteer state between the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. Across the U.S. 84.4 million people are expected to drive to their year-end holiday destinations. Americans will travel an estimated 760 miles round trip.

For up-to-date travel information, motorists may call 511 from any land line or cellular phone or visit www.TN511.com. TDOT is also on Twitter.  For statewide travel tweets follow www.twitter.com/TN511. Smartphone users can use the TDOT SmartWay Mobile website at http://m.tdot.tn.gov/SmartWay/ to access TDOT’s SmartWay cameras, incident information and messages displayed on overhead Dynamic Message Signs. Motorists are reminded to use all motorist information tools responsibly.  Drivers should refrain from texting, tweeting or using a mobile phone while operating a vehicle.  Drivers should “Know before you go!” and check traffic conditions before leaving for their destination.


Dalton's CALEA Accreditation Renewed

At Tuesday morning’s monthly meeting of the Public Safety Commission, Dalton Police Chief Jason Parker officially announced that his department has officially been re-accredited by CALEA (the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc). The agency was officially informed of the re-accreditation earlier this month after a team of CALEA assessors performed an inspection ... (click for more)

Protecting Our First Amendment Rights Is Topic Of First Amendment Dinner At The Jewish Cultural Center

The Jewish Federation of Greater Chattanooga invites the Chattanooga community to its ninth annual First Amendment Dinner on Thursday, Sept. 8 at 6 p.m. at the Jewish Cultural Center, 5461 North Terrace Road. "This event educates us about our First Amendment rights and honors local veterans for their service," organizers said. The keynote speaker will be Anti-Defamation ... (click for more)

Federal Judge Orders Walker County To Pay Erlanger $8,705,000, Plus Interest; Question Of Attorney Fees And Expenses To Go To Jury

Federal Judge Harold Murphy, in a 63-page ruling handed down Tuesday, ordered Walker County, Ga., to pay the Erlanger Health System $8,705,000, plus interest, on the Hutcheson Hospital debt. Judge Murphy, of Rome, Ga., said the question of attorney fees and expenses owed Erlanger by Walker County should be decided by a jury trial. Walker County and Catoosa County earlier agreed ... (click for more)

Pinkston Says Offer Was Made To Dismiss Lawsuit Against Him If Prosecution Of Detective Burns Was Dropped; Judge Greenholtz "Greatly Bothered" By Any Such Offer

District Attorney Neal Pinkston said at a hearing Tuesday that an offer was made to drop a lawsuit filed against him by Gatlinburg detective Rodney Burns if he would dismiss two perjury counts against Burns. The district attorney said he should not be disqualified from continuing to prosecute the case or else attorneys would begin suing him or the judge to get a new DA or trial ... (click for more)

Problems With The Proposed Apartments In Lookout Valley

I am deeply troubled at the way in which this proposal has been handled. The blatant disregard for the residents of Kelly's Ferry Road and the wishes of the Lookout Valley Area Plan (which was adopted by the city in 2003) by Chip Henderson and Tommy Austin amazes me. Yes, there was a meeting of the Lookout Valley Neighborhood association in August, but it wasn't on its normal ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Already, 248 Mass Shootings

There is not a word – not one – that I can use to respond to Dr. Loretta P. Prater, whose letter in Chattanoogan.com just condemned the idea that proposed volunteers in the Chattanooga Police Department be armed. Dr. Pater signed her letter, “Mother of Homicide Victim Leslie Vaughn Prater” and I’ve no doubt there is nothing in this world that will assuage the lifelong horror she ... (click for more)