YORK COUNTY — On Thursday, July 4, an estimated 125,000 people will attend fireworks displays in the areas of Lake Wylie near the Buster Boyd Bridge, and Carowinds theme park along Carowinds Boulevard near Fort Mill.
Depending upon the event, motorists should expect traffic delays of two hours, or longer, once an event has ended. Drivers should not call 911 to report, or complain, about traffic congestion.
Motorists will encounter delays in the following areas:
· Buster Boyd Bridge at the NC/SC Border (Hwy. 49). Event attendees will not be permitted to park on the bridge to observe fireworks displays. There will be no parking on Highway 49 in South Carolina or North Carolina. For motorists returning to Charlotte, suggested routes are N.C. 49 to N.C. 160, or Westinghouse Boulevard.
· Fort Mill Area Carowinds Blvd. /I-77 (Exit 90). North Carolina and South Carolina Departments of Transportation will utilize overhead and portable message signs to advise motorists of traveling conditions. Motorists may encounter delays at the Plaza Fiesta shopping center across from Carowinds theme park. After fireworks displays at the theme park, motorists will be directed to specific lanes of travel on Avenue of the Carolinas. The left two lanes will turn onto Carowinds Boulevard toward I-77 with access to North or South I-77 travel. The far right lane will be forced to turn right on Carowinds Boulevard to N.C. 49 north to Westinghouse Boulevard. No U-turns will be permitted on Carowinds Boulevard. Emergency lanes on I-77 are for emergencies only. No cars will be allowed to stop on the interstate emergency lanes to view fireworks
Public safety planning for this event began months ago and officers from many jurisdictions will be out in force.