SAVANNAH — UPDATE: State officials removed the contraflow operations at 4 p.m. Saturday and resumed normal traffic configurations for both east and westbound lanes.
Interstate 16 now flows west to help Georgians escape the wrath of Hurricane Irma.
State officials made the decision to reverse the eastbound lanes as mandatory evacuations were put in place earlier this week.
We'll have LIVE coverage of traffic across Georgia on Channel 2 Action News throughout the day
The portion of I-16 impacted is between Savannah and Dublin. Travelers driving east will be limited to the following exits:
- Exit 143 @ SR 30 / US 280 (Exit to Pembroke at Ellabell, Georgia)
- Exit 116 @ SR 73 / SR 301 (Exit to Statesboro and Claxton at Metter, Georgia)
- Exit 104 @ SR 23 / SR 121 (Exit to Metter and Reidsville at Metter, Georgia)
- Exit 90 @ SR 4 / US 1 (Swainsboro, Georgia)
- Exit 71 @ SR 15 / SR 78 (Exit to Soperton and Adrian at Soperton, Georgia)
- Exit 67 @ SR 29 (Soperton, Georgia)
- Exit 51 @ SR 31 / US 319 / US 441 (Dublin, Georgia)
@GeorgiaDOTSE showing final sweep complete. I-16 Contraflow lanes ready to use heading west toward @MaconBibb. @GADeptofTrans hard at work. pic.twitter.com/ETK8OnaVOB— GDOT East Traffic (@GDOTEastTraffic) September 9, 2017
State officials said I-16 isn't the only route to avoid Irma.
"We have 22 other hurricane evacuation routes besides the interstates, beside I-75, I-95 and I-16, and we would encourage people to see those routes that make sense to them," said Georgia Department of Transportation head Russell McMurray.
To further ease some of the congestion, the GDOT will suspend construction-related lane closures on interstates and secondary routes south of I-20 between noon Friday and 7 p.m. Tuesday.
Information from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution was used in this report.
Cox Media Group