GREENSBORO, NC -- Some drivers in the Triad are experiencing a lot of confusion this weekend because the NCDOT has closed an eight-mile section of I-40 for road work between U.S. 220 and I-85 North.
“It's been very difficult. I've been on like two different highways and I had to go all the way around just to come and get some gas,” said Maria Taylor.
The closure will also include northbound Business 85 at U.S. 220 and a number of access points along the interstate.
NCDOT crews are laying new asphalt in the eastbound lanes of I-40, between U.S. 220 and I-85 northbound.
The NCDOT has put up detour signs to make things easier for people to get around, but still the closure is leading to a lot of indecisiveness on the road.
“It was a big inconvenience,” said Don Guerrier. “We had to go all the way down so we were like eight minutes late for work.”
WFMY News 2’s Ben Powell checked the best routes to get around the closure by comparing smartphone navigation apps like Google Maps, Waze, and the iPhone maps app.
Each one accounted for the road closure and took us toward U.S. 220 South to get to I-85 North as a bypass.
In total, the detour was about a 15 minute drive from one side of the closure to the other.
With heavier traffic on the detour routes, Captain Jonathan Franks says drivers need to pack their patience and be alert.
“During the road closure, it's especially dangerous,” said Franks. “If you are not attentive and you don't pay attention, accidents do occur.”
When an emergency happens, Franks says every second counts.
That's why first responders have come up with an incident action plan to be ready to respond.
Police, fire, and EMS are all working off the same radio frequencies and can bypass the road closure if needed.
“Under extreme circumstances, if there is something major, we have enough leeway and room that we can escort a firetruck through,“ said Franks.
Although the closure is an inconvenience, drivers will just have to be patient knowing the work needs to be done.
“If they have to do the work, then They have to do the work,” said Guerrier. “I just have to get up earlier and get out here earlier.”
“God help us to stay calm on these roads,” said Taylor. “In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.”
DOT crews say they scheduled the work over the weekend in an effort to avoid major delays during rush hour.
The interstate will reopen Monday at 6 a.m.
Drivers can avoid traffic on I-40 altogether by taking I-73 south to I-85 north.
The closure includes the access to I-40 East from Randleman Road, Elm-Eugene Street, MLK Drive, E. Gate City Boulevard, McConnell Road and I-840 southbound.