DOH monitoring I-64 contraflow lane after problems

The DOH is closely monitoring the new contraflow lane on I-64, calling it a dangerous situation.

The contraflow lane opened near the Oakwood exit Sunday night, which affected Monday morning’s commute, and continues to be treacherous as commuters adjust to the changes due to construction on the Eugene Carter Memorial Bridge.

The state Division of Highways said “contraflow” means traffic is heading the opposite direction of the surrounding lanes on the bridge. One eastbound lane will transfer over to westbound traffic during road construction.

Carrie Bly, a spokesperson for the DOH, said that they now are having issues with traffic attempting to merge out of the lane and cross multiple lanes of traffic.

Bly advised drivers to stay in the two right lanes. She said drivers who are heading north should merge into the contraflow lane.

“If you accidentally get into the contraflow lane, it’s not that big of a deal. Just keep going and you can get off the Westmoreland exit and follow the detour routes,” she said earlier Monday.

Bly said they placed white posts at the end of the lane, but have been knocked down by drivers trying to pass through the area.

“Some people are getting out of that lane where those posts have been knocked down and are actually crossing three lanes of traffic to get over to go south,” said Bly, “That’s why we put those barriers there to keep people from doing that.”

She said this remains a concern for the near future on the interstate.

The east bound right lane will be closed Tuesday and Wednesday this week from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Crews will be setting up a portable concrete barrier wall around the work zone.

Construction is expected to continue through October.