Could hours-long traffic delays have been avoided or lessened?

Posted at 3:55 PM, Jan 07, 2022

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — For hours, I-75 was a parking lot. Hundreds of drivers were stuck on and around the Clays Ferry Bridge on the Fayette-Madison County line.

Many had plenty of time to think about why they were stranded.

Cathy Bryant of Lexington was at home, but that didn't stop her from pondering the problem. She said her daughter was stranded for eight and a half hours heading from her job in Lexington to her home in Richmond. Bryant wonders why more wasn't done to prevent so many stranded motorists.

"I just wanted to know why we didn't have a better way of dealing with these weather events, traffic accidents, and ways of getting drivers off of the interstate faster than eight or nine hours," said Bryant, who added she "grounded" in a similar situation a long time ago.

"You know, when I was a senior in college, and that was 40 years ago, I was in the same situation that my daughter was last night, and nothing has changed," claims Bryant.

Coming off the heels of a winter traffic nightmare in Virginia, she questions why local and state transportation officials weren't more prepared.

"They talked about this storm for two or three days. And I got the impression as a viewer that they knew it was going to come in pretty fast and furious. So I do think that they should have planned for this, especially knowing what happens on these interstates," said Bryant.

The Kentucky Transportation Department and local entities released regular road condition updates and encouraged drivers to stay home.

Bryant wonders if stretches of major roads could be closed early in the future to avoid similar problems.

"I think the issue is preventing people from getting on to begin with," stated Bryant.