BALTIMORE, MD – As summer comes to an unofficial close, the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) reminds the more than 2.4 million motorists anticipated to travel its bridges, tunnels and roadways over the Labor Day holiday weekend to plan ahead, to travel off-peak, and to put safety first. This total represents a 1% increase in traffic volumes compared to last year.
MDTA officials anticipate the following number of vehicles to travel its toll facilities between Friday, August 30, and Monday, September 2:
- William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial (Bay) Bridge (US 50/301) – more than 440,000.
- John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway (I-95) – more than 675,000.
- Fort McHenry Tunnel (I-95, I-395) – more than 690,000.
- Francis Scott Key Bridge (I-695) – more than 230,000.
An additional 400,000 vehicles are projected to travel the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel (I-895), the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge (US 40) and the Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge (US 301) combined. All totals represent traffic in both directions.
The MDTA offers the following travel tips for this holiday weekend:
Travel off-peak when heading to and from the Eastern Shore. The best times to travel the Bay Bridge this weekend include:
- Thursday – before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m.
- Friday – before 7 a.m. and after 9 p.m.
- Saturday – before 8 a.m. and after 6 p.m.
- Sunday – before 8 a.m. and after midnight
- Labor Day Monday – before 10 a.m. and after midnight
Stay on US 50 to keep local roadways open for first responders and residents.
- Avoid the Flock!
- For real-time updates on major incidents follow the MDTA on Twitter, find the MDTA on Facebook, and to sign up for email/text alerts or view real-time traffic camera images on MDTA roadways, visit mdta.maryland.gov.
- Call 1-877-BAYSPAN (229-7726) for 24/7 Bay Bridge traffic conditions or visit baybridge.com to view traffic cameras.
- Get there faster with E-ZPass! E-ZPass transponders are FREE, and there’s no $1.50 monthly fee. Visit ezpassmd.com to enroll online and for a list of E-ZPass “On the Go” retail locations.
- Need to rest or fuel up? Stop by the Maryland or Chesapeake House travel plazas along I-95 in northeast Maryland.
- Consider the Intercounty Connector (ICC)/MD 200 and I-95 Express Toll Lanes (ETL) in Baltimore during your holiday travels for more reliable travel times.
Keeping traffic moving as safely and efficiently as possible is the MDTA’s priority. The MDTA Police will remain vigilant and target dangerous drivers, seat belt violations and criminal activity with additional patrols at Maryland toll facilities.
Sober drivers save lives. The MDTA Police and Vehicle Recovery Units will have additional patrols on duty to respond quickly to incidents and disabled vehicles during the holiday weekend.
In addition, the MDTA will lift construction-related temporary lane closures on its roadways from 5 a.m. Friday, August 30, to 9 a.m. Tuesday, September 3.
Construction Reminder: I-895 Bridge Project currently features two-way traffic on I-895 north of the Harbor Tunnel. One lane is open in each direction, separated by barrier. Motorists should use I-695/Key Bridge and I-95/Fort McHenry Tunnel as alternate routes.
For your safety and the safety of other motorists and emergency personnel:
- Park the Phone – it is illegal to text and use hand-held cell phones while driving in Maryland.
- Buckle Up! Every Seat. Every Time.
- State law requires vehicles to Move Over when approaching an emergency, transportation, service and utility vehicle or tow truck with red, yellow or amber flashing lights. If you are unable to move over, slow down.
- Obey posted speed limits and overhead lane-control signals, and do not tailgate.
- Avoid changing lanes while traveling over bridges and through tunnels.
- Headlights are required at all times on the Bay Bridge. Keep your eyes on the road – do not sight-see.
- Make sure your vehicle is “road ready.” If your vehicle becomes disabled, remain inside and call #77 for assistance.
- When contacting a dispatch center, motorists should be prepared to provide:
• The location of the emergency;
• A call-back telephone number; and
• Details of the incident/disabled vehicle or other circumstances.
The E-ZPass Maryland Customer Service Centers will be closed on Monday, Sept. 2. Visit ezpassmd.com or use the automated system at 1-888-321-6824.