Lane closure on I-95 causing traffic problems as Irma evacuees leave NC

Traffic backed up on I-95 Tuesday in North Carolina. Photo by Kelly Kennedy/CBS North Carolina

LUMBERTON, N.C. (WNCN) —  An already-congested Interstate 95 in North Carolina will be worsened as crews make emergency repairs to the highway Tuesday in South Carolina.

Hurricane Irma evacuees from Florida and Georgia are now headed back using I-95 causing traffic woes.

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Now, officials say an emergency culvert repair is underway on southbound I-95 in South Carolina.

“Southbound motorists should expect delays south of Lumberton,” North Carolina officials said.

The South Carolina Department of Transportation closed the interstate’s right southbound lane Tuesday at Exit 186, which is south of the North Carolina state line, to allow workers to install a concrete barrier.

The lane is expected to be closed for at least one day after the damage caused in part by Tropical Storm Irma.

North Carolina officials already asked drivers Tuesday to avoid I-95, if possible, because of heavy traffic from evacuees.

Meanwhile, to help with evacuees return to Florida, the North Carolina Department of Transportation has suspended lane closures during the day for the southbound lanes of Interstates 95 and 77 and the eastbound lanes of I-26.

South Carolina officials suggested a detour around the traffic jam: The alternate route is SC 34 West (Exit 190) to SC 38 East. Motorists can get back on I-95 South at Exit 181.

Electronic message boards are in place notifying motorists of the lane closure and alternate route.

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