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TX-DOT closes I-10 West Executive off ramp without warning drivers in advance

With road construction projects causing quite the mess for drivers in West El Paso these days, ABC-7 relies on TxDOT to keep the station informed about closures and detours.

ABC-7 staff learned Wednesday, TxDOT doesn’t always get it right. The state agency acknowledged it made a mistake.

It helps to keep track of all the all updates from TxDOT about ramps or exits closing, especially when you work or live on the West Side. So imagine the surprise for drivers Wednesday when they approached the Executive Center westbound exit on I-10, only to find out at the last minute it had been closed.

TxDOT confirmed the exit was closed between 9 a.m. and noon on Wednesday in order to extend a culvert in preparation for bridge work.

It not only forced drivers trying to get off at the Executive exit to drive another couple miles up to the Sunland Park exit and having to turn around, it also caused what could be labeled a dangerous situation, as drivers signaled to exit but then were blocked by orange barrels from doing so.

The only warning sign came about 100 yards before the exit, or the length of a football field, with a flashing sign stating “RAMP CLOSED.”

TxDOT admitted Wednesday afternoon that it made a mistake.

“We have weekly meetings with the contractor to let us know what’s going to be closed. The eastbound ramp was closed, but they didn’t tell us they were also going to close the westbound ramp,” TxDOT spokeswoman Blanca del Valle said.

Had drivers been told earlier the westbound exit of Executive was going to be closed, they could have exited at UTEP.

Instead they were left proceeding a couple more miles to Sunland Park and having to turn around, adding about 10 minutes to their commute.

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