South Plains Travel Outlook Good - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

12/23/08

South Plains Travel Outlook Good

A long day of changing gates, or counting mile-markers ended Tuesday night for thousands of holiday travelers.  Meanwhile others were just preparing to catch a flight or jump in the car to head to their holiday destination.

There's good news for folks headed to or traveling on the South Plains. The roads were clear Tuesday, and right now it looks like they'll stay that way through the holiday weekend.  NewsChannel 11 did receive reports of some arrivals at Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport being delayed, but most travel there was going on without a hitch.  

For those heading off of the South Plains for the holidays, you may want to pack some patience. Delays, cancellations, blowing snow, and snarled traffic are some of the problems facing travelers across the country.  

"I got there about an hour and a half early, and I barely made my flight," Christel Nicholson said.  She arrived in Lubbock from Seattle, where thousands of stranded passengers were still trying to catch a flight. "We packed a pillow and a blanket, because I thought we were going to be in the airport for a day or two, but luckily we flew out on time," Nicholson said. 

"We're about to head out and go buy some presents and spend it here in Lubbock,"  Raymond Guerrero said.  "So you'll miss out on all the traffic," NewsChannel 11 asked.  "Yes sir," Guerrero said. 

The Texas Department of Transportation and AAA say a majority of travelers will arrive by car, taking advantage of lower gas prices.  "People are feeling like they can travel for the holidays and do it affordably," TxDOT Engineer Randy Hopmann said.

In Lubbock, drivers will also see fewer delays, with construction on hold for the holidays and new lanes open to traffic.  "We did make some good progress on the Marsha Sharp Freeway, and got some roadways opened up and have made some adjustments for the holiday season.  We also have done that on Spur 327 by finishing the Milwaukee intersection and also allowing traffic to go across the new bridges over Frankford," Hopmann said. 

Sunday is also expected to be a heavy travel day as folks may their way back home.  You can count on NewsChannel 11 and kcbd.com to keep you updated on travel conditions in our area.

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