Published: Wed, September 13, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Returning evacuees beware: I-75 could close near Gainesville

Returning evacuees beware: I-75 could close near Gainesville

Rain from Hurricane Irma has engorged the Santa Fe River, imperiling an Interstate 75 bridge that traverses the waterway, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) said.

The bridge crosses the Sante Fe River on the northern border of Alachua County and soon become an issue.

An additional rise is expected within the coming days as water levels from upstream move southward down the river.

As of Wednesday morning, the river level is safe at 55 feet. If the highway is closed it would require major detours for those trying to return to the state after evacuating due to Irma.

US 27, USA 41, State Road 47 and possibly USA 121 could be impacted by the flooding as well.

FDOT and DHSMV have staff monitoring the bridges that may be impacted by the flooding 24/7.

The good news is that I-75 is still passable so far (as of 1:15 a.m.) but Florida transportation officials are urging those traveling south to consider alternate routes.

FDOT says it is "actively working with WAZE, Google Maps, the Georgia Department of Transportation and other transportation industry partners to communicate the potential reroutes to the public". Drivers can also visit for more information.

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