I-16 contraflow begins Tuesday morning; Public urged to use all possible alternative evacuation routes

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ATLANTA (WSAV) – The Georgia Department of Transportation released an update on evacuation routes for Coastal Georgia.

Read the Georgia DOT release below:

 With mandatory evacuation of areas of coastal Georgia beginning today in advance of Hurricane Dorian, Georgia DOT encourages evacuees to plan their evacuation routes and reminds citizens that there are numerous routes throughout the state that provide alternatives to the already-congested interstates. Georgia DOT urges motorists to consider all possible evacuation routes in addition to interstate highways.

On Saturday, Gov. Brian P. Kemp issued a state of emergency for 12 southeast Georgia counties in anticipation of the storm.  Those counties are Brantley, Bryan, Camden, Charlton, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long, McIntosh, Pierce and Wayne.

On Sunday, the Governor has also issued a mandatory evacuation order for all areas east of I-95 that could be impacted by potential storm surge from Hurricane Dorian. Residents living in those counties are expected to begin mandatory evacuations beginning today at noon. Counties in the mandatory evacuation area east of I-95 include Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Glynn, Liberty and McIntosh. 

To facilitate travel from mandatory evacuation zones and areas of expected impact from the storm, Georgia DOT – working in coordination with the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency and Georgia State Patrol – will contraflow Interstate 16 from Savannah through US 441 in Dublin to allow evacuation traffic the opportunity to use all 4 lanes of I-16 in the westbound direction.  Contraflow will begin on I-16 at 8:00am Tuesday, September 3, and will remain in place until further notice. Georgia DOT Highway Emergency Response Operators (HEROs) and Georgia State Patrol have formed 13 strike teams that will assist with traffic situations that may occur.

“We urge the public to heed all warnings and evacuation orders; as we saw with Hurricane Matthew in 2016, a hurricane doesn’t have to make landfall in an area to produce significant impacts,” said Georgia DOT Commissioner Russell R. McMurry.  “This is about safety, not speed. We ask that everyone plan ahead, pre-select your evacuation route using 511, carry needed supplies and exercise patience and discretion. We’re all in this together.”

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