The Summer travel season kicks off this weekend with nearly 1.9 million drivers expected on Maryland roads for the Memorial Day weekend, according to the Maryland Transportation Authority. This is a 2.5% increase over last year. Nationwide, it’s expected to be the busiest travel weekend on the roads since 2005.
Many of those drivers will be coming our way…almost 400,000 are expected to traverse the Bay Bridge over the weekend.
The MDTA has some tips for you brave souls that plan to hit the road. For one, travel off-peak when heading to and from the Shore. Best times to travel the bridge are Thurs/Fri before 10am and after 10pm. Saturday before 7am and after 5pm. Sunday/Monday before 10am and after 10pm. Also, use the wealth of resources at your disposal: we will have Beach Traffic reports on WCEI Friday evening til 8pm, Saturday between 8a-2p, and Monday from 3-7pm. Call 1-877-BAY-SPAN for 24/7 bridge conditions. You can also view traffic cams at baybridge.com. Find info at the MTA Twitter & Facebook pages, and at mdta.maryland.gov.
I have some “tips” too: avoid route 50 (or any main road) at all costs…find a hammock and a cold beer…but I digress.
Keep in mind, cops will be looking for aggressive and impaired drivers, so please be smart, and safe! Wear your seat belts. Get plenty of rest before you hit the road. Don’t text and drive. Remember to move over when approaching emergency vehicles. This is a new state law this year. If you can’t move over, slow down. On the bridge, be sure to use your headlights.
When I feel myself start to get upset because of traffic, other drivers, or whatever…I try to remember what’s important (that 2 year old in the backseat, and the girl next to me always come to mind first). And then I realize I’m really not in such a hurry after all. Take a breath. Slow down a hair and let others do the road rage thing. Turn up the radio and sing along. Maybe think for a second about what this Memorial Day Weekend is supposed to be really all about. I wish all of you a fun, safe Memorial Day weekend!