Motorists should expect an increased police and work crew presence on key shore routes Thursday during a hurricane evacuation exercise, according to the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT).

Satellite picture of Hurricane Sandy approaching New Jersey in 2012.
Satellite picture of Hurricane Sandy approaching New Jersey in 2012. (NOAA)

The drill will be carried out with the New Jersey State Police (NJSP), the New Jersey Turnpike Authority (NJTA) and the South Jersey Turnpike Authority (SJTA) to practice and refine a response in the event of a major hurricane.

No roads will be closed during the drill, but officials said to expect activity on key Shore evacuation routes:

  • Atlantic City Expressway (entire length from Atlantic City to Washington Township)
  • Garden State Parkway (mile marker 0 in Lower Township to mile marker 38 in Egg Harbor)
  • I-195 (mile marker 6 in Robbinsville to about mile marker 34 in Wall)
  • Route 72 (mile marker 0 in Woodland to approximately mile marker 29 in Ship Bottom)
  • Route 47 (mile marker 16 to 21 in Dennis, and approximately mile marker 32 to 35 in Maurice River)
  • Route 347 (mile marker 0 in Dennis to about mile marker 9 in Maurice River)

The main element of the exercise is preparing to set up a contra flow (reversing traffic on a section of roadway to travel in the opposite direction) on these highways that serve as evacuation routes for the Shore. Crews will be staging cones, barrels, and message boards in designated locations along the side of these highways, but will not be deploying the materials. 

As a reminder, officials also said it is unlawful for motorists, including media, to pull off to the side of the freeway for anything other than an emergency.

Variable message signs will notify motorists of the exercise while it is underway.  Motorists are encouraged to check NJDOT’s traffic information website for real-time travel information.