Flooding causes accidents, traffic in construction zone on I-235

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Early Wednesday morning, flooding caused accidents leading to a traffic jam for several hours on Broadway Extension in the middle of a construction zone.

On Wednesday morning, witnesses told NewsChannel 4 they saw several vehicles hydroplane on the section of the interstate which slowed down traffic for nearly two hours.

“I’m stressed. I have to go to work,” said one driver.

"I'm late already, had to be at work at 6:30. It's 7:15,” another driver told NewsChannel 4.

High waters are partially to blame for the traffic jam.

Witnesses said they watched several drivers hydroplane.

"It was wet, and we hit something in the road, and it made us go to the median and spin us out, and that's when the other car hit us,” said Velita Downey.

The construction on I-235 is already causing congestion, making clean up difficult.

It’s part of an $88 million project which includes widening the interstate to six lanes plus auxiliary lanes between N. 36th and N. 50th to help accommodate the 95,000 drivers who use the section every day.

"This is one of the most complicated, longest phases of a multi-phase project on the Broadway Extension and I-44 interchange,” said Terri Angier with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation.

The project is also aimed toward fixing drainage issues.

"This was the next phase of the drainage improvements we had to do before we could continue with the other phases. So, it isn't a surprise to us, but it is a headache for drivers,” Angier said.

That’s why ODOT officials are urging drivers to take other routes if possible.

The project is expected to be completed in about three years.

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