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A Note from the General Manager about Excursions

Economy Could Also Be Affected By 1-75 Collapse

Bill Rinehart

Monday night’s exit ramp collapse in Cincinnati caused headaches for commuters, but it also may have trucking companies and manufacturers looking at their wallets and that could have implications statewide.

Depending on which agency you ask, anywhere from 133,000 to 178,000 vehicles travel interstate 75 past Hopple St. each day. 20,000 to 27,000 of those are commercial grade, like semi’s. They carry everything from finished goods, to the raw materials needed to manufacture those goods. With portions of southbound 75 shut down until late Tuesday afternoon, Ohio Trucking Association President Tom Balzer says there’s the potential shoppers may see a financial impact.

“There is that impact to the consumer, of goods not being available at the time that they want it, but I don’t foresee it to be a major outage of necessary goods that consumers will see because in this case there are alternative routes to deliver the product,” says Balzer.

Balzer says the bigger concern is truck drivers can only drive a certain number of hours, so time will be lost to detours, deliveries will be delayed, and companies will face additional fuel costs. Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana Regional Council of Government’s President Mark Policinski is concerned but cautions against getting too worried.

“I think you have to guard against making this more than it is, even though in the short run, it’s going to have an immense impact on the flow of freight in this region,” says Policinski. “But, hopefully, we’re talking about a matter of days, and therefore when we talk about long-run sustainability of our economy and things like that, we should be okay.”

Southbound interstate 75 was shut down Monday night when a portion of exit ramp being removed as part of a highway widening project collapsed unexpectedly, killing one and injuring a second.