ASHEVILLE, N.C. (WATE) – Blasting operations begin next week on a rural stretch of Interstate 40 in Haywood County, North Carolina, near the Tennessee border, which will result in lane closures and complete roadway closures.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation is working on a project to make the rockslide-prone area safer. They will be blasting unstable boulders from the mountainside near mile marker 7.
NCDOT says the contractor can completely block the road for up to 30 minutes each day between sunrise and 10 a.m. They plan on blasting six days a week. During that time, westbound travelers will encounter a rolling roadblock at exit 20 near Maggie Valley. Eastbound travelers will encounter one at Tennessee exit 447, Hartford Road.
During the rolling roadblocks, the on ramps at exit 15 in North Carolina and the I-40 westbound rest area will be closed. Travelers should be alert for stopped or slowed traffic from westbound North Carolina exit 20 to exit 7 and from Tennessee exit 447 to North Carolina mile marker 5 going eastbound.
The project is scheduled to be finished in October.