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New York prepares for eclipse gridlock: How long will traffic jams be on April 8th?

Ahead of the anticipated total solar eclipse next month, New York officials are issuing warnings about potential 12-hour traffic jams, fuel shortages, and overburdened cellphone networks. With millions of tourists expected to flock to the Empire State for this celestial event, state police troops serving regions from the Adirondacks to Canandaigua have rolled out emergency plans, drawing on the chaos of the 2017 eclipse, when some areas saw their populations double.


Concerns aren’t limited to congested roads; officials predict gas stations may struggle to supply the surge of visitors, and emergency services could face delays. Erie County is preparing for a million tourists, while Rochester anticipates half a million, and the Adirondacks expect around 170,000, sparking fears of insufficient resources to cope with the influx. Local authorities, like Tupper Lake Supervisor Rick Datolla, express apprehension about the event’s impact, urging residents to stock up on essentials.

In response, Governor Kathy Hochul highlighted 17 months of preparation to mitigate the anticipated challenges, including suspending construction and lane closures to improve traffic flow. The New York State Thruway Authority has also published travel tips for eclipse viewers, advising early arrival at viewing locations, patience, and safety precautions to ensure a memorable but orderly experience.



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