My Turn: Communication eases bridge closure woes - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

My Turn: Communication eases bridge closure woes

Most of the time I'm pointing out something bad with this segment.  Same goes for most of our guest presenters. 

You might find today's segment a refreshing change, because I want to thank one organization for its response to the criticisms levied against them a couple weeks ago.  

You might recall, we had a parade of angry complaints about the North Carolina Department of Transportation‘s handling of the Memorial Bridge closure on the last weekend of September. 

Their poor communication and lack of planning and execution practically brought this region to its knees.

But, what a difference a couple weeks and a well thought out plan can make.  This past weekend, the bridge underwent the same weekend long closure.  And it was like night and day.

Sure, there was some slow going at times, but nothing like what we experienced late last month.  It was much more an inconvenience and way short of the mess we experienced last time. 

Highway signs helped get the word out days in advance.  They made some adjustments to the flow of traffic.  And DOT and local police also had people on hand ready to help in the event of another gridlock situation.

So speaking on behalf of the thousands of people who travel these bridges frequently, you have my heartfelt thanks and appreciation for doing it the right way this time.

That's my turn. Now it's your turn.  To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at


Emailed comments from viewers:

It was because of the spirit of cooperation, team work, and communication between NCDOT, City, County, Media, Contractor, Law Enforcement and others that made this possible. I was amazed with the success of this weekend's event. Another tool in our tool box, was the assistance of NCDOT: Incident Management Assistance Patrols drivers from Raleigh and Charlotte that were able to clear the roadway of any incidents. The local law enforcement was amazed with their abilities to clear accidents and debris from the road to keep things moving. My thanks goes out to all those involved and the long hours that they put in making this happen.

I want the public know that the Department does listen to their concerns and many ideas we utilized came from comments received.

With the coordination of the city traffic signal timing, traffic control and law enforcement we processed almost 90,000 vehicles over the Holmes bridge with no more than a 3-5 minute delay that I am aware of. This over doubled it's normal capacity.

Thank you for allowing us to be your partner in this. The information provided by the media was a major help in letting folks know what to expect and help educate them on changes in traffic patterns.

Jackson Provost, Division Construction Engineer, NCDOT

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