NORTH PORT, Fla. - The Interstate 75 road closure Wednesday was causing a major headache for thousands traveling south.
"I'm trying to get to a place and can't," said Chester Dori. He was among the thousands stuck in gridlock traffic on I-75 Wednesday. The southbound lanes of the highway were closed around 6am due to a dump truck accident, catching many drivers off guard.
"I have a flight out of Miami and I've been in traffic for about an hour and its going to be tight now," said Tony one of the many drivers stuck in traffic.
"It's pretty much stop and go, its like sitting on a freeway in Los Angeles," said Vincent Dellarocca.
Traffic was blocked up from mile marker 193 and folks were being redirected off the highway at Exit 191/North River Road, then to U.S 41 and eventually back onto I-75 in North Port. But, that detour wasn't without delays, it took about twenty minutes to move just one mile.
"This a major thoroughfare and police need to do something better than just back up traffic for miles and miles on I-75 when something like this happens. I would think they would handle it a little better than what they have," added Dellarocca.
Drivers say the entire process set them back around 3 hours.
But not everyone was upset about the delays. Some people say they found things to occupy the time. "Were just listening to Christmas carols as we work our way south," said Kristen Victory.
"I've been calling some of my friends and trying to catch up on some work here in the car," added another driver.
Still others where less concerned with their time and instead worried about the person that caused the entire ordeal.
"I hope everything is okay, and I hope everyone is okay. That's most important," said Heson Mirani.
The southbound lanes were opened again at 4pm Wednesday, but are expected to closed again Thursday evening while crews continue to repair the Ponce De Leon Boulevard overpass that was damaged by the truck.