Holiday Weekend Suspension Supports Governor Cuomo's Drivers First Initiative to Ease Traffic on State Highways
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that temporary lane closures for road and bridge construction projects on New York State highways will be suspended beginning Friday, August 30 at 6 a.m. until Tuesday, September 3 at 6 a.m. to accommodate travelers during the busy Labor Day weekend. 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.
"This busy Labor Day weekend, we're taking steps to ease congestion and help motorists get to their destinations with fewer delays," Governor Cuomo said. "I urge all New Yorkers to make safety a priority this weekend. Stay alert, don't drive distracted, and if you need to answer a phone call or text, utilize one of the many rest areas or text stops. I wish all New Yorkers a safe and happy Labor Day weekend."
Governor Cuomo is urging motorists to follow the state's Move Over Law, which requires motorists to slow down and move over if safe to do so, for law enforcement vehicles, fire trucks, ambulances, tow trucks and construction or maintenance vehicles that are stopped along roads across the state.
New Yorkers are reminded that state and local law enforcement will be participating in the statewide "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" enforcement through Labor Day, Monday, September 2. The enforcement and education campaign is designed to prevent intoxicated and under the influence driving on state and local roads. Motorists can expect to see law enforcement stopping and arresting impaired drivers in order to keep New York's roads safe this holiday weekend.
New York State Thruway Authority Executive Director Matthew J. Driscoll said, "With roadway construction on hold over the Labor Day weekend, motorists will spend less time sitting and traffic and more time with family and friends enjoying the holiday. We urge motorists to drive safely and responsibly. Remember to slow down and move over if it's safe to do so when you see emergency vehicles or maintenance workers on the side of the road. The lives of our employees, emergency workers and motorists depend on it."
New York State Department of Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said, "The safety and convenience of the traveling public are always top priorities of the New York State Department of Transportation and we applaud Governor Cuomo's Drivers First initiative, which helps to minimize traffic congestion and allows travelers to reach their destinations sooner. We wish everyone a joyous Labor Day weekend and urge motorists to drive cautiously, have patience in work zones, and please treat our team members who are performing maintenance and construction on our roadways, with the respect they deserve."
Mark J.F. Schroeder, DMV Commissioner and Chair of the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee, said, "As people travel this Labor Day weekend, we are glad to see that Governor Cuomo is again making their trips easier by suspending construction. We urge all New Yorkers to make sure their cars are in proper working order, with sufficient air in their tires, oil changed if necessary, sufficient wiper fluid and a kit for emergencies. Look out for motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians and other users of the road and enjoy wherever your travels may take you."
New York State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett said, "State Police will be highly visible this weekend, working to keep our highways safe as motorists travel to their holiday weekend destinations. We urge all drivers to do their part by obeying posted speed limits, putting away smart phones, moving over for stopped emergency and highway maintenance vehicles, and staying focused and alert when behind the wheel."
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.
Motorists should be aware some work may continue behind permanent concrete barriers or for emergency repairs. 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 can check NYSDOT's 511NY before traveling, by calling 5-1-1, visiting the 511 website here, or downloading the free 511NY mobile app on iTunes or Google Play. The free service allows users to check road conditions, view traffic cameras and link to air and transit information. The app features Drive mode, which provides audible alerts along a chosen route while a user is driving, warning them about incidents and construction.
The Department of Motor Vehicles urges drivers to use the Have a Plan app to help find a safe way home from a celebration where they may be drinking. The free app from the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee and the NYS STOP-DWI Foundation allows users to designate a driver, call a cab or ride share, and to review the consequences of impaired driving. Users can even use the app to report a drunk or drugged driver. The app is available for Apple, Android, and Windows smart phones.