MDOT of­fers hol­i­day travel tips ahead of Thanks­giv­ing

The Avenue News - - EDITORIAL -

The Mary­land Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion (MDOT) of­fers Thanks­giv­ing travel tips for Mary­lan­ders – whether they’re cruis­ing from the He­len Delich Bent­ley Port of Bal­ti­more, or us­ing state road­ways, buses, the Bal­ti­more/Wash­ing­ton In­ter­na­tional Thur­good Mar­shall Air­port, or tolled fa­cil­i­ties.

“MDOT wants you to get to your hol­i­day des­ti­na­tions safely – whether you’re go­ing by plane, train or car, across the state, across the coun­try or just across the street,” Trans­porta­tion Sec­re­tary Pete K. Rahn said.

Thanks­giv­ing is one of the busiest travel weeks of the year and kicks off the hol­i­day travel sea­son. With more peo­ple trav­el­ing be­tween Thanks­giv­ing and New Year, each of MDOT’s six trans­porta­tion busi­ness units pro­vided the fol­low­ing tips:

High­way Safety – MDOT Mo­tor Ve­hi­cle Ad­min­is­tra­tion Mary­land High­way Safety Of­fice

• Drive sober and, if drink­ing, plan for a sober ride home. Use tran­sit, call a cab or a rideshare ser­vice.

• Al­ways buckle up: ev­ery seat, ev­ery time, day and night.

• Driv­ing de­mands your full at­ten­tion. Keep your eyes on the road.

Cruis­ing – Mary­land Port Ad­min­is­tra­tion – Port of Bal­ti­more:

• Plan care­fully and ar­rive early at the Cruise Mary­land Ter­mi­nal.

• Pack warm clothes for when you re­turn from warm beaches to colder weather.

• Truck­ers, re­mem­ber there will be more cars on the roads so plan more time to get to and from the Port of Bal­ti­more dur­ing the Thanks­giv­ing week­end. High­ways – MDOT State High­way Ad­min­is­tra­tion

• Travel dur­ing off-peak hours to avoid sig­nif­i­cant de­lays. Typ­i­cally, off-peak hours in­clude:

• Tues­day and Wed­nes­day — be­fore 6 a.m. and af­ter 11 p.m.

• Thurs­day through Sun­day — be­fore 9 a.m. and af­ter 9 p.m.

• If your ve­hi­cle be­comes dis­abled, re­move the ve­hi­cle as far as pos­si­ble from the travel lanes.

• Call #77 or 911 in an emer­gency (when able to safely make the call).

• Check over your ve­hi­cle’s tires and flu­ids. Pack sup­plies and an emer­gency kit. Have a backup plan for an al­ter­nate route.

• To help keep trav­el­ers mov­ing safely on Mary­land roads, the state is tak­ing the fol­low­ing mea­sures:

• MDOT SHA will sus­pend non­emer­gency lane clo­sures in most ar­eas from Wed­nes­day, Nov. 21 to Mon­day, Nov. 26 at 9 a.m.

• Mary­land’s Emer­gency Traf­fic Pa­trols, spon­sored by State Farm, will be as­sist­ing mo­torists in need through­out the state.

• Mary­land’s 511 sys­tem – http:// www.md511.org – in­cludes ac­cess to hun­dreds of cam­eras, weather in­for­ma­tion, real-time lane clo­sures and much, much more.

Tolled High­ways – Mary­land Trans­porta­tion Au­thor­ity (MDTA)

• Mary­land Trans­porta­tion Au­thor­ity Po­lice will tar­get im­paired, ag­gres­sive and dis­tracted driv­ers, seat­belt vi­o­la­tors and crim­i­nal ac­tiv­ity.

• MDTA Po­lice and Ve­hi­cle Re­cov­ery Units will have ad­di­tional pa­trols on duty to re­spond quickly to in­ci­dents and dis­abled ve­hi­cles.

• MDTA will lift con­struc­tion-re­lated tem­po­rary lane clo­sures at its fa­cil­i­ties from 5 a.m. Wed­nes­day, Nov. 21, to 9 a.m. Mon­day, Nov.

26.

• MOVE OVER and SLOW DOWN when ap­proach­ing emer­gency ve­hi­cles on the side of the road.

• It Can Wait! Pull over to call, text or use an elec­tronic de­vice. In Mary­land, hav­ing a safe place to call or text is only a rest stop away, in­clud­ing the Mary­land and Ch­e­sa­peake House travel plazas on I-95 and other rest ar­eas across the state.

• Tesla and Univer­sal Elec­tric Ve­hi­cle Charg­ing Sta­tions are avail­able at both the Mary­land and Ch­e­sa­peake House travel plazas.

• It’s not too late to pick-up an EZPass for Thanks­giv­ing travel. Visit ez­passmd.com for a com­plete list of re­tail lo­ca­tions for EZPass On-the-Go.

• Air Travel – Bal­ti­more/Wash­ing­ton In­ter­na­tional Thur­good Mar­shall Air­port

Pas­sen­gers should be

• Be in the air­port two hours ahead of sched­uled de­par­ture.

• Pack care­fully. Check TSA’s web­site — www.TSA.gov — for what you can/can’t bring through check­points.

• Lo­cal mo­torists pick­ing up ar­riv­ing fam­ily mem­bers or friends should ei­ther park in the Hourly Garage or use the up­per level / depar­tures road­way to avoid pos­si­ble con­ges­tion along the ar­rivals road­way.

• This year, BWI Mar­shall Air­port is of­fer­ing free park­ing for cus­tomers “in-and-out” of the Hourly Garage within one hour from Fri­day, Novem­ber 16 through Fri­day, Novem­ber 30 and Wed­nes­day, De­cem­ber 19 through Sun­day, Jan­uary 6.

• Com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles (ho­tel shut­tles, off-air­port park­ing shut­tles, Uber, Lyft, and oth­ers) must use the up­per level or depar­tures level road­way to pro­vide their ser­vices dur­ing the hol­i­day pe­riod, Novem­ber 15 through Jan­uary

6.

• The Cell Phone Lot has 50 ad­di­tional spa­ces dur­ing the hol­i­day sea­son. The Cell Phone Lot pro­vides a free, con­ve­nient lo­ca­tion for mo­torists to wait for ar­riv­ing pas­sen­gers.

• The Re­gional Bus Stop # 1 will be tem­po­rar­ily closed dur­ing the hol­i­day sea­son, Novem­ber 15 through Jan­uary 6. MTA, WMATA, pre­pared: and RTA bus cus­tomers should use Re­gional Bus Stop # 2, lo­cated on the lower level / ar­rivals level road­way near the In­ter­na­tional Ter­mi­nal.

Tran­sit – MDOT Mary­land Tran­sit Ad­min­is­tra­tion (MDOT MTA)

Cus­tomers are ad­vised that on Thanks­giv­ing Day, MDOT MTA will op­er­ate on its hol­i­day sched­ule and re­turn to its reg­u­lar sched­ule on the Fri­day af­ter Thanks­giv­ing. MARC Train will not op­er­ate on Thanks­giv­ing Day and its Penn Line ser­vice will op­er­ate on the “R” sched­ule the day af­ter Thanks­giv­ing with no Brunswick or Cam­den line ser­vice that day. Visit www.mta.mary­land.gov and click on Thanks­giv­ing Day Ser­vice to learn more.

For vis­i­tors fly­ing into BWI Air­port, MDOT MTA of­fers easy ac­cess to vir­tu­ally all parts of the re­gion with Light RailLink and Bal­ti­moreLink bus ser­vices. And, MARC Train can get you to Wash­ing­ton, D.C., down­town Bal­ti­more and points north, with sev­eral depar­tures and re­turns each day. For your con­ve­nience, there is free shut­tle bus ser­vice from BWI Air­port to the BWI MARC Train sta­tion. For more in­for­ma­tion on tran­sit to BWI, visit https://www.bwiair­port.com/tofrom-bwi/trans­porta­tion/tran­sit.

For lo­cal riders, Bal­ti­moreLink bus ser­vice of­fers high-fre­quency, re­li­able tran­sit through­out the Bal­ti­more re­gion. And, all Ci­tyLink bus lines pro­vide con­nec­tions to com­pan­ion rail modes, in­clud­ing Metro Sub­wayLink, Light RailLink and MARC Train.

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