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Old 05-09-2013, 04:40 PM   #1
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Thumbs down I-81 in PA closed

I-81 North and Southbound near mile marker 67 in Pennsylvania is closed until further notice due to a severe tractor trailer accident that has permanently burned an overpass. This is at the interchange for I-81, PA 322 and PA 22, all major highways through Pennsylvania. The roadway will be closed at least until Monday 5/13 to assess the total damage. Repairs could take 2 to 3 months. Traffic is being rerouted to I-76 (PA Turnpike) and to I-83. Major backups and congestion is occurring and is expected for the next few days. Updates can be obtained from PennDot site - www.511pa.com.
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Old 05-09-2013, 04:52 PM   #2
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I-81 truck fire video

PennDOT: Fire damage to close I-81 through weekend - abc27 WHTM
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Old 05-10-2013, 10:25 PM   #3
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This will be a major problem. It looks like I can go north on I 81 then get on I 76 and go east to SR 322 and go north to exit 70 on I 81 and continue north. The 511PA.com site says that the detour is from exit 59 to 70. Does this sound right to anyone on this board? This problem still does not sound as bad as traveling north on I 95 through Virginia, Wash DC, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey. I'm hoping things will get better by the middle of June.
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Old 05-12-2013, 05:44 PM   #4
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There are a number of alternatives. One is to stay on 81 north to I-581 (exit 59). 581 will take you around the southern side of Harrisburg to I-83 north. I-83 rejoins 81 about MM70. However, this has been major backups and accidents since the closure. Alternate two is like you said, I-76 (PA turnpike) from exit 52. Leave the turnpike at Exit 247 which will take you to I-83 as above. Less traffic, but toll road.

PennDot is planning to reopen northbound I-81 next week, but will be subject to frequent closures as the two overpasses are torn down. Reconstruction of these overpasses will take months (the bridge near my house was recently closed to rebuild. PennDot said it will take two years!!!). By June, for your trip, I trust things will be calmed down. Unfortunately, this area of 81 has been under reconstruction for two years already, so this just compounds the problem. Lane closures, cattle shoots, terrible! Good Luck. Will post updates.
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Old 05-12-2013, 08:36 PM   #5
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Thanks Bertman. I will be taking my time and checking with 511PA.com on a regular basis. I am also going to search for campgrounds in the area if I can't make it through or get delayed in the mess and can't make it to my planned destination at Cabelas in Hamburg.
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Old 05-12-2013, 09:17 PM   #6
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Yep, the traffic has been horrible. I live right across the river and working on a remodel job in Dauphin... Basically have to go out of my way to HACC and turn around to get back on 322 west.

That ramp is a horrible design and there's a good 5-6 wreck a year on it. They need to put some rumble strips on it.
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:33 AM   #7
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The news this morning said they could have i-81 opened as early as tomorrow.
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Old 05-13-2013, 01:07 PM   #8
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That is good news. I would still like some advice about construction in the area. My worry is that they will narrow the lanes with Jersey barricades and force me to use two lanes of traffic. They never seem to understand that MHs and trucks are wider than cars. I'm not worried about being delayed as I am retired and not on a strict schedule anymore.
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Old 05-14-2013, 05:43 AM   #9
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81 is open both ways for now. The bad section of bridge is torn down.
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