To ease holiday travel, the Arizona Department of Transportation has not scheduled construction-related closures along state highways over the three-day Memorial Day weekend.
Travelers are still asked to allow extra travel time, be prepared for existing work zones and obey reduced speed limits.
Heavier traffic should be expected by Friday afternoon on busy travel routes such as Interstate 17 and State Route 87 north of Phoenix. Eastbound Interstate 10 heading toward California will likely be backed up.
In addition, a procession honoring a fallen Phoenix firefighter was expected to close sections of eastbound Loop 101 and southbound I-17 on Friday afternoon. The closures were expected to begin after 3 p.m. following a service in Peoria for firefighter Brad Harper.
Eastbound Loop 101 will be closed between 75th Avenue and I-17, while southbound I-17 will be closed between Loop 101 and McDowell Road. The closures are expected to be in place between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Friday.
Crews will reopen the freeways as soon as possible after the fire department procession passes by. Drivers are encouraged to avoid those areas and use alternate routes.
Late Saturday morning, a second procession for fallen Phoenix police Officer Daryl Raetz will close eastbound Loop 101 between 75th Avenue and Seventh Street. This procession will follow a 9 a.m. service for Raetz.
Among the highway locations with existing work zones are Interstate 10 between Prince and Ruthrauff roads in Tucson, where the highway is being reconstructed and widened, and southbound Interstate 17 near Camp Verde, where crews are working on a new climbing lane.
Drivers also should anticipate heavier traffic at times when traveling along US 93, the primary travel route to and from Las Vegas.
ADOT and the Arizona Department of Public Safety urge holiday travelers to follow these summertime safe-driving tips:
Highway conditions are updated and can be checked on ADOT's travel information site at www.az511.gov or by calling 511.
Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.