An estimated 3.7 million people are expected to use the Pennsylvania Turnpike for Thanksgiving this week, Tuesday through Sunday, according to the PA Turnpike Commission (PTC).
This exceeds last year’s total which broke more than 3.5 million motorists, but will be trumped once again. The busiest time of the year for travelers is always near the end of November as the holiday brings travel plans to visit relatives for turkey and hit the roads for Black Friday.
Newly elected PTC CEO Mark Compton recommends anyone planning to use the roads should drive safely and have a vehicle they are confident can hold up in winter conditions
“Even though Pennsylvania has already experienced its first winter storm, it’s Thanksgiving that marks the official beginning of the winter holiday travel season,” Compton said. “As we have already seen this week, hazardous and changing weather conditions can lead to a spike in auto accidents. When you factor in the additional traffic on the roadways during the week ahead, the risk is even higher.”
Tuesday and Wednesday are expected to be the busiest days with 750,000 travelers For planning trips, the most congested travel time will be Tuesday from 3 until 8 p.m., all day
Wednesday, and Sunday from noon until 8 p.m.
To accommodate the heavy influx of traffic, all construction and road work has been suspended from this Tuesday morning at 5 a.m. until 11 p.m. Sunday. All lanes will be open, except during emergencies.
Anyone can dial *11 on their mobile phone for Turnpike specific emergencies or 911 for emergencies in general.