Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that lane closures for road and bridge construction projects on New York State highways will be suspended beginning today until Thursday July 5, in order to accommodate travelers during the busy Independence Day holiday. Some work may continue behind permanent concrete barriers or for emergency repairs. The construction suspension supports Governor Cuomo's Drivers First initiative, which prioritizes the convenience of motorists to minimize traffic congestion and travel delays due to road and bridge work.
"As New Yorkers celebrate America's birthday, we want to help ensure everyone traveling our roadways gets where they need to go safely and without delay," Governor Cuomo said. "I wish residents and visitors alike a happy Fourth of July."
Governor Cuomo is also urging motorists to follow the state's Move Over Law which requires motorists to drive with care, slow down, and safely move over when approaching law enforcement vehicles, fire trucks, ambulances, tow trucks, and construction or maintenance vehicles that are stopped along roads across the state. The law was enacted in 2011 to protect New Yorkers working along the roadway and has since been expanded to include a wider range of emergency and hazard vehicles.
New York State Thruway Authority Acting Executive Director Matthew Driscoll said, "The Thruway Authority joins Governor Cuomo in wishing all New Yorkers a happy and healthy Independence Day holiday and asks everyone traveling during the holiday to drive safely. By following laws such as the Move Over Law, you are doing your part to help save your life and the lives of drivers around you and our employees working to keep you safe."
New York State Department of Transportation Acting Commissioner Paul A. Karas said, "Governor Cuomo's Drivers First initiative is designed to minimize inconveniences for motorists during peak travel times, and this suspension of construction activities is sure to help families better enjoy the Fourth of July holiday. We urge all drivers to refrain from distracted driving, not only during the Fourth of July holiday but throughout the year, and utilize the 511NY website when making their travel plans."
Motorists are encouraged to utilize the 64 text stops, as well as Service Areas, Rest Areas and Welcome Centers located statewide as needed for texting, making phone calls, and other non-driving tasks.
According to AAA, a record-breaking 46.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home this Independence Day holiday, an increase of more than 5 percent compared with last year. AAA predicts the busiest travel day during the holiday week to be Tuesday, July 3.
There will be slight variations for certain Thruway projects based on previous traffic volume. A detailed schedule of Thruway lane closures throughout the holiday weekend is available here.
The Thruway Authority encourages motorists to download its mobile app which is available to download for free on iPhone and Android devices. The app provides motorists direct access to real-time traffic and navigation assistance while on the go. Motorists can also sign up for TRANSalert e-mails which provide the latest traffic conditions along the Thruway here.
Travelers are reminded to check 511NY by calling 511 or by accessing www.511ny.org before departing. The free service allows users to check road conditions or link to air and transit information.
Mobile users can download the free 511NY mobile app from the iTunes or Google Play stores. The app now features Drive mode, which provides audible alerts along a chosen route while a user is driving, warning them about incidents and construction. Users can set a destination prior to departing and receive information on up to three routes.
Follow New York State DOT on Twitter: @NYSDOT and on Facebook at New York State Department of Transportation.
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