Georgia Department of Transportation (DOT) along with private contractors worked through the night to demolish the State Route 86 bridge. Because of their progress, Governor Brian Kemp announced today that they will reopen both westbound lanes of I-16 at 5 PM today, Friday July 16, 2021.

The Governor is optimistic that the Eastbound lanes will be fully open early Saturday morning, July 16, 2021.

Georgia DOT East area engineer Corbett Reynolds said the contractors removed 600,000 tons of debris which was nearly 35 truck loads over night.


Governor Kemp praised Georgia DOT and private contractors for working so quickly to rapidly move up the timeline in getting interstate I-16 back open.

The interstate was closed in the early morning hours of Thursday, July 15, 2021 after a large truck struck the State Route 86 bridge.

A tractor trailer, traveling westbound on I-16, with a dump bed raised struck the bridge shifting the entire bridge six feet according to GDOT Commissioner Russell McMurry. Over 21,000 cars pass this section of I-16 daily.

Westbound I-16 opens at 5:00 PM on Friday, July 16, 2021

Eastbound Detour (10 mile detour) – Macon to Savannah:

Take Exit 71 – Turn Right onto Highway 15, through Soperton, Left onto State Route 46, Left onto State Route 56, Re-Enter I-16 at Exit 78

DeWayne Grice

Herschel DeWayne Grice is the founder of Grice Connect an online news and information company in Statesboro, Georgia. DeWayne has been active in the media for over three decades. He brings a unique insight...