AAA says more travelers hitting the road for Memorial Holiday Weekend

Gray Hall Image
Thursday, May 23, 2019
AAA : More travelers hitting the road for Memorial Holiday Weekend
AAA : More travelers hitting the road for Memorial Holiday Weekend. Gray Hall reports during Action News at 6 p.m. on May 23, 2019.

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (WPVI) -- Many of you have traveled along the Atlantic City Expressway this time of year and you know the drill, there is traffic and lots of it.[br /][br /]This holiday weekend, AAA says there will be even more drivers headed to places like down the shore.[br /][br /]Mechanics are doing last minute checks on vehicles and the countdown is quickly winding down. We're now just hours away from Memorial Day Weekend.[br /][Ads /][br /]"AAA is projecting the largest travel volume since 2005 for the Memorial Day Holiday Weekend. It's an increase of 3.6 percent over last year," says Jana Tidwell with AAA.[br /][br /]Tidwell says drivers won't be lonely out there on the roads. She says locally, more than half a million people will be driving 50 miles or more to their destinations. She says this is the 5th consecutive year for travel growth on the Memorial Day Weekend and explains why we are seeing the increase.[br /][br /]"The economy has been pretty good over the past few years. And when people have extra money in their pockets, gas prices have been relatively low the last couple of years. When people have that extra change, they are willing to travel," Tidwell says.[br /][br /]AAA considers Thursday through Monday night, the time period for the holiday weekend.[br /][br /]We caught up with many vacationers getting a head start and with good reason, they want to beat the traffic. Most everyone we talked to is headed down the shore.[br /][br /]"It's pretty bad, we just deal. We get there eventually. We make a lot of stops, and sit in massage chairs," says Kate Carrera of Drexel Hill.[br /][Ads /][br /]"Oh, it is packed down there. There is not a parking space to be had. And that is another reason to go down to the shore early, you can get a parking space," said Frank and Marie Crescenzo of Marlton, New Jersey.[br /][br /]The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is encouraging drivers to use its 511 traffic page to determine the best times to travel over the holiday. You can check traffic speeds, traffic conditions, and other travel issues before you map out your trip.[br /][br /]Consider traveling during off-peak times, earlier in the mornings, late at night. Over the next two days, commuters are going to mix with holiday travelers for the a.m. and p.m. rush," Tidwell said.[br /][br /]For more information [url HREF="" TARGET="" REL=""]click the 511 traffic page[/url].[br /][/url].[br /][br /]AAA also provides more helpful information: Last Memorial Day weekend (May 24-29, 2018), AAA helped more than 55,000 stranded motorists in the Mid-Atlantic territory, with 7,465 of those in the Philadelphia 5-county area alone. The most common calls for service were tows, battery, and tire issues.[br /][br /][b]Road Trip Ready[/b][br /][Ads /][br /]While some maintenance and repair tasks are best left to certified automotive technicians, there are several basic items motorists can easily check themselves between trips to their auto repair facility, including the following:[br /][br /][b]Windshield Wiper Blades[/b] - If wiper blades are worn, cracked or rigid with age, they will not adequately remove rain, grime and other debris that can obscure driver vision. If the wiper blades are sufficiently deteriorated, the metal wiper blade frame could contact and permanently damage the windshield.[br /][br /][b]Tire Pressure[/b] - Check and adjust tire pressure, including the spare. Always inflate tires to the vehicle manufacturer's recommended settings-not the maximum pressure molded on the side of the tire.[br /][br /][b]Tire Trea[/b]d - Check the tread depth by inserting a quarter upside down into a tire groove with Washington's head facing outward. The tread should cover part of Washington's head. If any of the areas above Washington's head is visible, it's time to start shopping for new tires.[br /][br /][b]Battery[/b] - Have your battery checked, especially if it is over three years old. Summer heat breaks down the battery internally and accelerates the rate of corrosion on vehicle's battery terminals.