CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The South Carolina Department of Transportation will participate in a statewide hurricane lane reversal drill on Thursday to make sure crews are prepared in case reversals become necessary this hurricane season.
The drill will run from approximately 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., but no lanes will be closed or actually reversed during the drill, SCDOT spokesman Robert Kudelka says.
Instead, SCDOT crews will be rehearsing the placement of traffic control devices along portions of I-26, between Columbia and Charleston; US 21 and US 278 in Beaufort County; and US 501 in Horry County.
During this exercise, SCDOT Maintenance crews travel to designated locations along these routes to deploy barrels and cones. Employees will deploy the barrels on roadsides and shoulders for the drill so traffic flow will not be interrupted, Kudelka says.
During an actual hurricane lane reversal these barrels and cones would be used to safely manage evacuation traffic. During an actual evacuation, barrels would be deployed on the travel lanes, intersections and exits. Other SCDOT staff members are involved in monitoring the flow of traffic from the Traffic Management Centers and deploying traffic control devices such as message boards along the routes that would be reversed.
Motorists are advised to use caution as SCDOT crews will be stationed along roadsides.
SCDOT announced earlier this year an updated plan for reversing lanes on I-26, which includes beginning the reversal at the Nexton Parkway crossing, exit 197, instead of at I-526 as in past years.