I-75 traffic snarl in East Tennessee eased

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- State officials have reopened southbound traffic on Interstate 75 in northeastern Tennessee for the first time since the collapse of a section of embankment last Friday.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation completed work on a crossover lane late Wednesday, allowing one lane of southbound traffic to be shifted to one northbound lane. There are now two lanes available for northbound traffic, and one lane for southbound vehicles.

TDOT said Thursday there is no timetable for when the interstate, just below the Kentucky line, will reopen to normal traffic patterns. A detour route remains in effect for wide loads; the 26-mile detour had been needed for all traffic since the collapse last Friday.

I-75 is the main route for spring break traffic between Kentucky, the Midwest and Florida.