CHARLOTTE, NC — This Thanksgiving is expected to be the busiest travel season since 2007. AAA says, traditionally, it’s also the deadliest travel time.
Bumper to bumper traffic is nothing new in Charlotte, but add more than a million drivers traveling at the same time.
“Utter chaos combined with absolute insanity,” said Tammy Rainwater.
That’s the reputation for Thanksgiving travel.
“It’s going to be real busy,” said Bob Gist.
Gist will drive to his family in South Carolina next week during the dangerous time of year due to the five days that surround Thanksgiving.
AAA says 12 people died on North Carolina roads that time last year.
“I don’t like driving on this holiday,” said Miros Rava. “It’s too dangerous.”
Highway patrol expects peak traffic time Wednesday will be after work.
Thursday, cars will pile up before lunch.
Black Friday, backups will begin in the morning with shoppers.
Capping off the holiday, interstates will stay packed with people coming home on Sunday.
It’s the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport’s busiest holiday as well.
There will be some relief. A new parking garage has 4,000 spaces, but only 1,000 are open.
“Yeah! It’s easy to get here, and pick up your family,” said Kim Owens. “And wait for them.”
If you’re leaving like Owens, “It’s easy access to the terminal.”
However, with gas prices at a five year low, AAA says 90 percent of people will hit the road to see family.
Interstates 77, 85 and 485 will have the heaviest traffic.
Troopers say if your car breaks down, call *47 for help. If you’re on I-485, you’ll have to call AAA.