Weather adds to TN holiday travel challenges – WBIR

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7 day outlook


More than 38 million people will be flying this holiday season. Airport authorities urge travelers to check with their airlines for updates before heading to the airport. Dec. 23, 2015

(KNOXVILLE) Dec. 23 is the first official day of the 11-day holiday travel season, with a record-setting 100 million people expected to travel by air or highway.

Just in Tennessee, more than 2.1 million people will hit the road, according to AAA.

Rain and storms moved across the state Wednesday, soaking our East Tennessee highways. That’s making already crowded roadways more dangerous.

Don Lindsey, a spokesman for AAA of East Tennessee, says visibility will be the main problem for drivers.

“Our car becomes less visible to other people. So we want to have our lights on, make sure they’re all working so other people can see us. If your windshield wipers have been streaking, go get them changed. Because that can make all the difference in the world,” said Lindsey.

Lindsey also said to make sure your tires have plenty of tread. A trick is to stick a quarter into one of the grooves, and if you can see George Washington’s head, you need new tires.

In the event of an accident, the Tennessee Department of Transportation is prepared to help keep the busy roads moving.

“We’ll have six HELP trucks on the roadways in the Knoxville area through rush hour. And after that we’ll have three still out on the roads,” said spokesman for TDOT Mark Nagi.

The roads are not the only places getting crowded.

Airports across the country are seeing dozens of delays. At McGhee Tyson Airport, there were only a few delays and cancelations as of Wednesday evening.

Severe weather could change that quickly.

“Things always change. And it doesn’t necessarily mean if the weather here is fine that you don’t need to still check your flight. So be sure to check your flight because inclement weather in your destination could affect your flight here,” said spokeswoman Caitlin Darras of McGhee Tyson Airport.

More than 2 million Tennesseans will travel during this holiday season.


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