STEVENSVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — The Maryland Department of Transportation and partner agencies shared some travel tips on Thursday to help travelers save time and stay safe throughout the busy Memorial Day weekend.  

AAA predicts that 39 million Americans will be traveling Thursday through Monday, up more than 8% from last year, including 814,000 Marylanders.  

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“The airports are going to be busy, the roads are going to be busy, it’s going to be busy,” said Ragina Ali, Public & Government Affairs Manager for AAA Mid-Atlantic.  

Officials from MDOT, law enforcement agencies, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and AAA Mid-Atlantic gathered in Stevensville by the Chesapeake Bay Bridge to share the tips and remind motorists of common causes of crashes and fatalities and how they can prevent them.  

“We’re all working together hard to ensure that Marylanders can travel efficiently and safely this Memorial Day weekend and all Summer long,” said Jim Ports, the MDOT Secretary.  

The Executive Director of the Maryland Transportation Authority d Will Pines said that driving during off-peak hours is recommended especially over the Bay Bridge. Heavy eastbound volume is expected Thursday through Saturday and heavy westbound volume is expected Sunday into Monday.  

MDOT said that the best times to travel the Bay Bridge this weekend include:  

  • Thursday, May 26 – before 10 a.m. and after 9 p.m.  
  • Friday, May 27 – before 8 a.m. and after 9 p.m.  
  • Saturday, May 28 – before 8 a.m. and after 4 p.m.  
  • Sunday, May 29 – before 11 a.m. and after 9 p.m.  
  • Memorial Day Monday, May 30 – before 9 a.m. and after 11 p.m.  
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“Over this travel weekend we expect upwards of 330,000 vehicles that will travel so certainly expect a difficult travel experience if you don’t travel during those best times,” said Pines.  

Slideshow: MDOT detailed traffic forecasts for the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, the Washington DC region and the Baltimore region this weekend.

The group also encouraged travelers to drive sober, not to drive distracted, follow the speed limit and move over for stopped first responders, tow trucks and stalled vehicles.  

Throughout the summer, MDOT said that law enforcement agencies will participate in high visibility enforcement efforts for impaired driving, seat belt use, speeding/aggressive driving and distracted driving.  

“You will see a noticeable police presence along the roadways. Together with our law enforcement partners, it will be an all-hands-on -approach to ensure that you can drive to your destinations safely,” said Lt. Colonel Roland Butler, Chief of the Field Operation Bureau for Maryland State Police. 

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Stetson Miller