Travel, statewide weather updates

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For many, Labor Day weekend marks the end of the vacation season. This means that many will hit the road and take advantage of nearby travel destinations.

Chances of rain will simmer by Friday and weather experts were advising people to be wary of temperatures over 100 degrees set to hit Arizona, including excessive heat warnings over the three-day weekend.

Here is the latest news for this three-day weekend:

The best things to do | The events are worth seeing | Travel tips for the weekend

Check back for the latest road restrictions, travel updates and weather conditions.

2:45 p.m. Friday: Eastbound I-10 reopens at 16th Street

The eastbound lanes of Interstate 10 are now open at 16th Street in Phoenix, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

The closure was due to an accident. Motorists are advised to pay attention to residual delays. Westbound lanes were not affected, according to an ADOT tweet.

1:15 p.m. Friday: Arizona agencies scramble to tackle DUIs

State, county and local law enforcement in Maricopa and Pima counties stepped up efforts to prevent motorists from driving under the influence over Labor Day weekend.

The Scottsdale, Mesa, Tempe and Gilbert Police Departments were working with the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department, the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.

The Pima County Sheriff’s Department was also teaming up with the governor’s office, using its equipment to aid the department’s DUI efforts, according to a statement from the sheriff’s department.

Law enforcement is suggesting that people considering consuming alcoholic beverages or marijuana designate a sober driver, use a ride-sharing app, or call a taxi service.

9:45 a.m. Friday: I-10 eastbound closed at 2 locations

Due to crashes, eastbound Interstate 10 was closed at two locations: 16th Street and 75th Avenue, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

All lanes were closed at 16th Street and there was no estimated time for reopening. ADOT was directing traffic off the freeway at the exit.

At 75th Avenue, the center lanes were closed, according to an ADOT tweet.

Eastbound Interstate 10 was closed at 16th Street in Phoenix after an accident on September 2, 2022.

9 a.m. Friday: Road closure on 51st Avenue in Glendale

A box truck crashed into utility poles and a business, causing a fuel leak, Sept. 2, 2022, in Glendale.

A van truck hit electric poles and a business, causing a diesel leak early Friday.

The Glendale Police Department closed the road to clean up and investigate the situation.

Police closed 51st Avenue between Orangewood and Glendale Avenues. We didn’t know if there were any injuries and we didn’t know how long the road would be closed.

—Ayana Hamilton

8 a.m. Friday: No road closures scheduled over the holiday weekend

While Arizona is not expected to see full highway closures over Labor Day weekend, the Arizona Department of Transportation is warning travelers to be prepared for heavy traffic.

“ADOT and its contractors will suspend all full highway closures from Friday afternoon September 2 until early Tuesday September 6,” the agency said in a press release. “Drivers should always allow for extra travel time and be prepared for lane restrictions in some existing work areas.”

The agency recommended travelers pack extra drinking water along with other items such as a fully charged cell phone, first aid kit and snacks.

ADOT said it expects the heaviest traffic Friday afternoon and early evening as well as Monday afternoon for those heading home. He warned that Interstate 17 and State Route 87 typically see the most traffic during Labor Day weekend.

Those passing through work areas should also expect delays. These areas include a portion of southbound I-17 that is reduced to one lane in separated areas for an ongoing pavement improvement project along a 30-mile stretch south of Flagstaff.

State Route 89A in Oak Creek Canyon north of Sedona is another example of a work zone, with traffic alternating one direction at a time in the “switchback” zone.

—Perry Vandell

06:00 a.m. Friday: Excessive heat warning goes into effect Sunday

Anyone planning to spend their Labor Day weekend in the Valley of the Sun should prepare for the higher than average temperatures this week.

Isaac Smith, a National Weather Service meteorologist, told The Arizona Republic that the valley will see highs and lows of around 109 and 86 degrees respectively thanks in part to high pressure weather.

“We have strong high pressure over the desert southwest which is really promoting these higher temperatures – especially as you head further west through California where you see widespread excessive heat products,” said Smith.

Smith said an excessive heat warning is expected to come into effect Sunday through Monday, but noted the warning could come as soon as Saturday. Popular hiking trails, such as Camelback Mountain and Piestewa Peak, are closed from late morning until evening when a warning is in effect.

Smith added there was a slight chance of thunderstorms Friday night, with high-speed winds picking up dust likely the biggest danger.

Smith said drivers caught in dangerous conditions should pull over and wait for the weather to improve before continuing.

Temperatures are expected to drop slightly to 106 degrees by next Wednesday, though that’s still a few degrees higher than the average temperature of 103 to 104 degrees that Phoenix normally sees at this time of year. Smith said highs are expected to drop throughout September, with 96 degrees being the average high by the end of the month.

Smith warned anyone with outdoor plans for Labor Day weekend to watch out for excessive heat and stay hydrated.

—Perry Vandell

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