Raleigh - The following are highlights from this week at the N.C. Department of Transportation. The stories below are also featured in the department's weekly newscast N.C. Transportation Now.
Even though blue skies have returned to the state, many roads and bridges remain closed due to flooding and Hurricane Matthew-related damage. Governor Pat McCrory and the N.C. Department of Transportation encourage citizens to be vigilant and take caution while out on the road, because they can still face hazards that are not always obvious, including downed power lines, fallen trees, and flooded or washed out roads.
More than 20 weather-related fatalities have occurred in North Carolina in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. The vast majority are attributed to motorists driving in flooded or barricaded roadways. Record inland flooding continues to be a concern in the central and eastern parts of the state. If you encounter a flooded road, "turn around, don't drown!"
Transportation workers are currently assessing the damage to roads and bridges where it is safe to do so. Equipment and staff from all over the state have been deployed to assist in the hardest-hit areas.
While the department knows the damage Hurricane Matthew caused is extensive, it will not know the full magnitude of the destruction until the water recedes and inspections of roads and bridges are completed.
Drivers should be aware that they cannot rely on GPS for updated closure and detour information. Before venturing onto roadways, travelers are urged to visit ReadyNC.org or call 5-1-1 for real-time road closure and traffic conditions.