High School Football

Turnpike Thanksgiving travel highest in 10 years

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — There was more traffic on the West Virginia Turnpike during this year’s Thanksgiving holiday travel period than any of the last 10 years, state Parkways Authority General Manager Greg Barr said.

There were 783,000 transactions at the 88-mile toll road’s three toll plazas from last Tuesday through Sunday night. That’s three percent more than last year and the highest in the last 10 years, Barr said.

“Our previous high was 2009 when we did over 772,000 transactions,” he said.

A few factors worked in favor of the higher numbers including lower gasoline prices, good weather and no serious accidents that backed up traffic for miles. Barr said he’ll mark this one down.

“We’ve had our moments over the years. It only takes one tractor trailer to jump the tracks so to speak and the road shut down. That’s happened in the past and it’s not been good,” he said.

Last Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, and Sunday were the busiest travel days. There were 178,000 toll plaza transactions on Wednesday and 179,500 on Sunday.

More than 75 percent of the traffic on the Turnpike comes from motorists from other states.

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