Travelers frustrated about interstate backup - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Travelers frustrated about interstate backup

If you were unlucky enough to be stuck in the massive traffic tie up Tuesday on I-40, state transportation leaders say help is on the way

It's considered one of the worst traffic jams on Memphis interstates in recent memory.
 
Tearesa Claiborne, who was stuck on I-40, says, "Normally it's about a 15 minutes drive but it took 1 and a half to two hours."
 
Thousand of morning commuters were snarled on I-40 at Sycamore View for hours.

The backup was the result of an accident involving a semi truck and four other cars; no one was seriously hurt, but some commuters got burned by the bumper to bumper traffic.   
 
clifton Qualls was upset because the accident made him late. "I had to work two hours late, two hours late," says Qualls.   
 
But what's being built is designed to help drivers avoid a chaotic commute.

Tennessee Department of Transportation spokesperson Pamela Marshall says, "Forty two message boards are being constructed on the 86 miles of interstate in Tennessee."
 
Message boards like the one on I-40 west near the Arkansas line will go up throughout the interstates in and around Memphis. The people working the boards and messages will be headquartered out of a facility being built at White station near I-40.

Marshall continues, "These message boards will provide information about any kind of traffic ahead on that particular interstate and will also offer alternative routes."  

Qualls continues, "It would help a lot if you would know ahead of time...it would help people going to work in the morning time especially with the traffic.  Memphis traffic is HECTIC!" 
 
The facility and the 42 messages boards are expected to be up and running on the Memphis interstates by next summer.

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