LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV)-- Construction zones can cause a lot of congestion and sometimes result in major delays. One zone that's highly-traveled, and even more so this time of year is between Little Rock and Memphis.
Drivers traveling East or West Interstate 40 between Little Rock and West Memphis may as well prepare to see a lot of congestion.
Randy Ort with the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department says drivers must be patient as the department improves this busy stretch through Lonoke and Prairie counties.
They're calling it the Red Zone, and currently it's the only Red Zone in the state. It's 10 to 12 miles of stop and go traffic.
"That section of I-40 out there during the summer months can sometimes see up to 40,000 vehicles a day! Also sometimes half of that traffic are heavy trucks." says Ort.
Ort calls this a unique situation because they don't normally narrow the interstate down to JUST ONE lane. But this time, it's a must due to surrounding wet lands and farms.
Ort says, "Understand that if you go through the work zone you may encounter some delays. We continue to expect that and plan for it."
The highway department is always asking drivers to keep a close eye and a watchful eye when on the highway. But they're also doing the same for you during this project: They have patrolmen watching for anyone who has trouble. And they'll pull over and help you, just like Tex Ritter.
"We look for people on the side of the road that are on the side of the road that have a flat or overheated vehicle or out of gas or whatever. We even check on the big rigs!" says Ritter.
Ort also says if you've got a smart-phone, there are some very helpful apps you can download to find traffic congestion and alternate routes.
You can also visit their website here.