Emergency management officials brace for heavy solar eclipse tra - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Emergency management officials brace for heavy solar eclipse traffic

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LOUISVILLE, KY (WDRB) -- Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to travel to western Kentucky to see the total solar eclipse, which will bring heavy traffic to the region.  

Christian County Emergency Management Director Randy Graham said  a traffic plan has been in the works for nearly two years.

“We ask that you come early, kind of get where you’re going to your destination, stay put and then stay late,” Graham said.

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet spokesperson Andrea Clifford said  nobody really knows how many people will show up for the eclipse.

“We’ve heard from NASA anywhere from 100,000 to 500,000, so it’s going to vary,” Clifford said.

KYTC is prepositioning crews to deal with crashes, will have people manually controlling lights at some exits and will deploy a helicopter to watch traffic from the air.

"Have a viewing location in mind. Go ahead and have your place picked out,” Clifford said. “Don't just think you're gonna wander in and just stop when all of the darkness begins."

Emergency crews expect traffic to be worse after the event is over because many people will try to leave at the same time. Traffic could be heavy the day after the eclipse as well as people who stayed overnight leave the area.

Emergency Management officials said you should bring plenty of food and water. They also want drivers to fill up their gas tank before hitting the road.

The cellular phone system might be overwhelmed making communication more difficult. KYTC wants drivers to bring paper maps or use a GPS that does not rely on cell phone networks to download information. 

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