Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival will soon take place in the city of Manchester, Tennessee June 13-16 and according to the site, it’s close to being a sell out this year. During the Bonnaroo Festival, the area in and around Manchester sees increased traffic volume as festivalgoers make their way into the festival site.
Tennessee Department of Transportation and the Tennessee Highway Patrol are gearing up for the extra traffic expected in the area. TDOT and THP are working closely with the Manchester Police Department, the Coffee County Sheriff’s Department and festival promoters to keep traffic moving on I-24 while also getting Bonnaroo attendees to their destination.
“The number one goal of the Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) is to reduce traffic-related incidents and fatalities,” said THP Colonel Dereck Stewart. “We recognize and value the importance of working closely with TDOT and our public safety partners to create a fun and safe atmosphere for those attending Bonnaroo. So, think twice if you are planning to drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs and passengers do not get in a vehicle if the driver is impaired. Our Troopers and local law enforcement will be looking for reckless and impaired drivers. Remember to always wear your seatbelt, and do not drive distracted. The Tennessee Highway Patrol is devoted to reducing crashes and saving lives on Tennessee roadways.”
Drivers who need the assistance of a state trooper while traveling anywhere in Tennessee, they can simply dial *THP (*847) from their cell phone. They will be automatically connected to the nearest THP dispatch office and the operator will send a state trooper to their location.
In addition to having HELP trucks on-site, TDOT and other agencies will be taking the following steps beginning Wednesday, June 12 through Monday, June 17:
- Efforts will be concentrated on keeping I-24 traffic flowing.
- Exit 111 (SR 55) will be used as the main festival exit. Exits 97, 105, 112 (temporary exit on westbound side only), 117 and 127 are alternate exits if congestion occurs on the interstate.
- TDOT maintenance units will be posted throughout the festival region, and maintenance personnel will be on call all weekend.
- TDOT will provide variable message signs to warn drivers of delays.
- There will be no construction-related lane closures on I-24 near the Bonnaroo festival area between 6:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 12 through 7:00 p.m. on Monday, June 17.
- Median crossovers will be guarded to prevent motorists from parking in the crossovers and blocking emergency vehicles.
- Festival traffic will be kept in the right lane and/or on the shoulder of the interstate, allowing through traffic to utilize the left travel lane unimpeded.
- Emergency vehicles will use county roads that will be kept at low volume.
- Bonnaroo promoters issued early news releases to the trucking industry and other sources to alert the traveling public to festival times, location, and alternate routes.
- Temporary communication towers are in place to improve emergency communications.
During the festival, motorists should call 511 from any mobile or landline phone for traffic updates or visit the TDOT website at www.tn.gov/tdot where they can also find information on alternate routes.