BEAUMONT, Texas — Some Southeast Texans feel the construction taking place at a section of Interstate 10 makes the area "a death trap" for drivers.
"I try to avoid that section of I10 between Beaumont and Winnie because of all that construction," Greg Wall, Southeast Texas driver, said. "If someone messes up in front of you, you are going to be paying the price."
Wall and others are still reeling from a deadly nine-vehicle wreck that took place on Interstate 10 eastbound Saturday. The wreck left one person dead and caused traffic that lasted more than five hours.
Wall and his wife were stuck in traffic caused by the deadly wreck.
"Just two or three minutes before we were probably a quarter of a mile away from where the crash had occurred," Wall said. "So we were there for over two and a half hours."
The deadly crash is just one of the many wrecks that have occurred along the stretch of Interstate 10 between Beaumont and Winnie.
"I feel terrible for the person who was killed," Wall said. "It was a terrible tragedy. It just takes one mistake from someone, and there is no way out with these concrete barriers."
Beaumont had more than 1,100 crashes in work zones in 2022, according to the Texas Department of Transportation. Those crashes resulted in 10 deaths.
TxDOT Public Information Officer Sarah Dupre said the department is hoping to change those alarming numbers with the public’s help.
“Make sure that they've got all their attention focused on the roadways,” Dupre said. “With large construction projects like this, you never know if it might be different, you know the roadway might be different from the last time you went through that area. There might be some heavy equipment going through there causing a little bit of congestion."
TxDOT officials hope the construction on the stretch of Interstate 10 between Winnie and Beaumont will be complete by 2025. Many who drive in Southeast Texas said they cannot wait for the construction to be done.
"Very, very large projects," Dupre said. "There is a lot that goes into it. Completely reconstructing I10. Right now, we are looking at 2025 for the last two segments to be complete."
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