SOUTH ABINGTON TOWNSHIP -- You may want to avoid driving through one section of the Abingtons in Lackawanna County beginning Thursday night.
PennDOT plans to detour Interstate 81 traffic through residential communities in the Clarks Summit area.
PennDOT made drivers aware that there would be some lane restrictions on the interstate while the Edella Road bridge was replaced. Now, after crews punctured a water line, it now looks like Interstate 81 will be completely closed in some directions over the next couple of days.
A forklift caused a water line break alongside Interstate 81 late Tuesday night.
Crews continued work on the bridge -- some of it planned, some of it cleaning up part of Tuesday's mess.
The bridge to be replaced, one of more than 500 under the Rapid Bridge Replacement, is expected to be finished by about August.
But with this water line break, PennDOT crews are setting up more than just some interstate 81 lane closures here and there.
Right now, only one lane northbound on Interstate 81 will be open through the night. Then, on Thursday night from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Friday, Interstate 81 is scheduled to be completely closed northbound from the Clarks Summit exit (194) to the Waverly exit (197) with a detour through a residential area.
On Saturday night into Sunday, the southbound lanes of Interstate 81 are expected to be completed closed as well.
"It's not going to be good. It's going to be a mess around here. These roads around here are too small to have trucks trying to make their way back onto (Interstate) 81," said Scott Township resident Joe Malar.
A deli and gas station near the Waverly exit is not looking forward to the detour. Normally, you would think having a detour come through would be good for business, but the owner says that's not the case.
"It's going to be bad."
Even though the detour will only be in place during the overnight hours, Doc Daugherty plans to spend most of his time trying to steer drivers in the right direction, not necessarily making a lot of money because of it.
"Everybody is going to be getting off 81 and they're going to be confused and try to find a way around it. They're not going to follow the detour. They're going to go different ways," said Daugherty.
As if the traffic wasn't enough, Daughtery also lives on the detour route.
"The dogs will be going all night. He'll be howling because there's going to be a lot of truck traffic. We'll see a lot of truck traffic."