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‘It’s annoying;’ New contraflow lane causing issues for drivers on first day open

Drivers can expect big changes on I-75 in Montgomery County starting today

Drivers started using a new contraflow on southbound Interstate 75 early Tuesday morning and there have already been two crashes on that stretch of the highway.

The lane opened to traffic just before 5 a.m. on Tuesday in Northern Montgomery County, making it the second active contraflow lane in the county.

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Drivers like Shaun Wilson have opinions on driving through the single contraflow lane through both construction zones on I-75 in the county.

“It’s annoying,” Wilson said.

On Tuesday morning, our WHIO Traffic Expert Jake Magnotta was tracking crashing in the area of the new contraflow lane. One was in the single lane that just opened up.

“Well not even two days into it and we already had two accidents today,” Magnotta said.

As we showed you on News Center 7 at 6:00, it took about an hour and a half to get the contraflow lane back open between Needmore Road and Wagner Ford Road.

News Center 7 has heard concerns from drivers that the contraflow lanes cause more crashes. News Center 7′s John Bedell took those concerns to the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT).

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“A lot of times people are familiar with the interstate when there’s not work going on, and so they drive a certain speed. And then when there’s work zones,” Mandi Dillon, ODOT Regional Public Information Officer, said. “They need to really slow down. And if they’re not doing that, they can get caught off guard.”

ODOT uses contraflow lanes in construction zones statewide to keep three lanes of traffic moving. Dillon said they’ve researched contraflow lanes and only put them where ODOT engineers feel they’ll be a good fit.

“Any time we have a major project, these projects go through the design phase first and we look at all the options to try and figure out what’s the best way to keep traffic flowing and keep everyone safe,” Dillon said.

The contraflow lane is going to be around for another year. The construction zone it sits within is going to be around until fall 2026.

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