TDOT sending HELP trucks to assist with Battle at Bristol traffic

KNOXVILLE, TN (WJHL) – The Tennessee Department of Transportation HELP trucks will be on Interstate 26 and Interstate 81 this weekend to help with the high volume of traffic expected for the Battle at Bristol game at Bristol Motor Speedway.

According to a TDOT news release, there will be four HELP trucks set up to patrol the area and help drivers on I-26 and I-81 from noon Saturday through early Sunday morning.

Following the game, TDOT will also be closing one lane of I-40 West at the I-40/I-81 interchange to give those leaving BMS on I-81 South and traveling toward Knoxville two lanes of easy access to I-40 West.

The following is the full release issued by TDOT:

The Tennessee Department of Transportation will send “HELP” to the Tri-Cities this weekend in an effort to assist with heavy traffic expected on Tennessee roadways as a result of the “Battle at Bristol” college football game at Bristol Motors Speedway on Saturday, September 10.

Very high traffic volumes are expected to pass through East Tennessee over the weekend, affecting interstate highways, state routes, and local roads near the game venue. TDOT will provide four HELP trucks to patrol the area and assist motorists on I-26 and I-81 from 12 noon Saturday through early Sunday morning.

TDOT HELP trucks are equipped with four-wheel drive, push bumpers, top-mounted arrow boards, emergency work lights, air compressors and other tools. Operators can perform a variety of functions, from clearing a stalled car off the roadway to changing a flat tire.

In addition to HELP operations, TDOT will provide the following traffic control measures:

  •  Maintenance units will be available throughout the region to assist motorists
  •  Portable message boards will be posted to warn drivers of any possible delays
  •  All construction lane closure activity will be suspended from Friday, September 9, until Monday, September 12.

For post-game traffic, TDOT will close one lane of I-40 West at the I-40/I-81 interchange. This will provide traffic leaving the game on I-81 South and traveling toward Knoxville two lanes of easy access to I-40 West. Message boards will be used to advise motorists of these changes.

Any motorists not attending the event are asked to plan ahead and avoid the area if possible.

From your desktop of mobile device, get the latest construction activity and live streaming SmartWay traffic cameras at www.TNSmartWay.com/traffic. Travelers can also dial 511 from any landline or cellular phone for travel information, of follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/TN511 for statewide travel.

As always, drivers are reminded to use all motorist information tools wisely and Know Before You Go! by checking travel conditions before leaving for your destination. Drivers should never, tweet, text or talk on a cell phone while behind the wheel.

Copyright 2016 WJHL. All rights reserved.

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