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I-49 in Northern Louisiana (Louisiana closes I-49 way too soon in cold weather.)

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bwana39:
Louisiana closes I-49 way too soon in cold weather.  Last month there was a forecast of sleet and they closed it from I-220 to the state line southbound. They detoured the traffic at the first suitable Northbound  exit in Louisiana (Mira - Myrtis Road... Caddo Parish 16.) From there all of the traffic is routed on US-71 which is two lane and terrible. Last month it didn't sleet. Fact of business it was 31 degrees and clear overnight.  They DID at least open it EARLY the next morning.

Tonight, they did it again. It MAY sleet tonight. It did rain some today and there Might be some ice in the morning.  Last year, they didn't close it a single time. The year before, they kept it closed for nearly a week once and a day or two a different time.  There May have been justification for a day MAYBE two of the week and one of the other times there was icing. Arkansas NEVER closed their stretch. With the exception of one day year-before last, the traffic went its regular 75+ mph southbound until Mira-Myrtis Rd then slogged at 45 behind the trucks that were overly cautious for the traffic not the weather. The roads were dry except for the chuckholes and they were several.

I guess the point is there has never been a significant multi-car weather related wreck on this stretch and Louisiana isn't going to give it  a chance to happen. As far as that goes, if the road does get icy, it may be as much because there isn't traffic to keep it clear as it is that would ice and be too slick for traffic.  what they should be doing is monitoring the Interstate and when it begins to become hazardous then close it, not close it as a prophylactic measure before the weather even comes, much less the roads becoming less than stellar.

I might give one caveat, the I-220 intersection MIGHT merit early closure. That would be as simple as forcing the traffic to exit Southbound at North Market and Closing the I-220 and MLK Exits from / to  I-49 and allowing Northbound traffic onto the freeway at North Market.  This was the route before the I-220 intersection was opened.

https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=12856.msg311424#msg311424 (This thread is all about this stretch.)

I-49 from I-20 to Bert Kouns has problems with pileups when it is dry. Perhaps it should close a little early, but not as soon as it currently does.

There have been some MAJOR pileups on I-49 between Shreveport and Natchitoches. This is the root of the problem. Initially they left I-49 South open until it closed itself. This led to real problems. 

Their reaction was to over react. SO now it will never see a patch of ice when it is open because it will close with the temp in the mid-thirties and completely dry, just because someone in the weather business say it COULD be 28 with precip. 

US 89:

--- Quote from: bwana39 on February 11, 2021, 11:52:42 PM ---Their reaction was to over react. SO now it will never see a patch of ice when it is open because it will close with the temp in the mid-thirties and completely dry, just because someone in the weather business say it COULD be 28 with precip.

--- End quote ---

Never hurts to be cautious when the same storm just caused a 100-car pileup in Fort Worth with at least 6 fatalities...

bwana39:

--- Quote from: US 89 on February 12, 2021, 01:14:27 AM ---
--- Quote from: bwana39 on February 11, 2021, 11:52:42 PM ---Their reaction was to over react. SO now it will never see a patch of ice when it is open because it will close with the temp in the mid-thirties and completely dry, just because someone in the weather business say it COULD be 28 with precip.

--- End quote ---

Never hurts to be cautious when the same storm just caused a 100-car pileup in Fort Worth with at least 6 fatalities...

--- End quote ---

Yea but........,

There is a difference in erring toward caution and ridiculous.  The  night it was closed several weeks ago, it was dry and never got below 31. Yesterday in Fort Worth it was 23F to 27F at 6:00 AM.  It had rained and freezing fog.  Big difference in closing it at the first sign of icing and closing it for a weather forecast that fails to even start to materialize.

edwaleni:
What is even more frightful was all the people with their cell phones/dash cams in the opposing lanes recording the entire thing. One semi literally climbed over the top and landed.

bwana39:
I do get what you are saying, BUT I-49 is 3-hours away from Fort Worth.  Would you close the freeways in Baltimore because weather impacted traffic in New York City?  The distance is similar.

It MIGHT blow down there...


On a less argumentative note, they did open it soon after daylight this morning.  The process has improved over the past couple of years. Year before last, they closed it as soon as the snow / sleet / ice fell and kept it closed until all of the snow melted from the embankments. 

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