Atlantic Coast states prep for Hurricane Florence transportation impacts

Traffic lane reversals and transit cancellations are among the steps some states are taking

September 11, 2018
Hurricane impacts to traffic, roadways

States of emergency have been declared in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia in preparation for Hurricane Florence's arrival, a Category 4 hurricane expected to hit the Atlantic Coast later this week, including evacuation plans and transit cancellations for some.

An evacuation of South Carolina’s coast was ordered by Gov. Henry McMaster Monday. That means hundreds of thousands of people, potentially more than a million, will have to head inland in an attempt to escape the impact of Hurricane Florence. In an effort to help facilitate a safe and timely evacuation, part of McMaster’s order includes reversing lanes on a number of major highways in South Carolina. The reversals are scheduled to begin Tuesday at noon.

Amtrak has canceled train service in North Carolina starting the middle of this week in anticipation of Hurricane Florence’s arrival in the state. All Piedmont trains between Raleigh and Charlotte, and Carolinian trains between Charlotte and New York City are canceled from Thursday through Sunday, Amtrak announced Monday. Other long-distance trains that make stops in North Carolina and South Carolina, including the Silver Meteor, the Crescent and the Silver Star, will not be passing through the states from Wednesday through Sunday.

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is preparing to keep Virginia roads safe ahead of forecasted effects of Hurricane Florence. Crews across the state stand prepared to respond to any unsafe traveling conditions and damage resulting from the storm. Heavy rain is expected to move into most of Virginia late Thursday, Sept. 13, with impacts expected into Friday and the weekend. Ahead of the storm, VDOT staff and crews are taking a number of steps to prepare for impact, including planning for staff augmentation of Safety Service Patrols and Traffic Operations Centers for additional traffic monitoring, emergency response capabilities and assisting motorists in distress along major routes.


Source: AccuWeather / VDOT / News & Observer / The State