Interstate 75 at the Western Hills Viaduct comes to a dead halt for more than an hour Thursday night. (Photo provided by www.ohgo.com)
Vehicles stack up on the Seventh Street bridge heading into Downtown Thursday night. (FOX19 NOW/Jessica Schmidt)
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -
Were you one of the motorists stuck on Interstate 75 through Northern Kentucky and downtown Cincinnati when both sides shut down without warning for more than an hour during Thursday's evening rush?
Blame the U.S. Secret Service, according to Cincinnati city officials.
President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence were in town Thursday speaking before thousands at US Bank Arena in downtown Cincinnati. It was part of their "Thank You Tour of swing states that carried him over Hillary Clinton.
They flew into the Tri-State and landed at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, which brought their motorcade through the Cut in the Hill and into Downtown right at the heart of the evening commute.
Cincinnati officials explained why they were not permitted to give any advance warning in a statement posted to the city's social media accounts:
"Transporting the President-and Vice President-Elect from CVG to US Bank required the closure of I-75 in NKY from the airport to downtown, in both directions, for just over an hour during tonight's rush hour," wrote Rocky Merz, city spokesman.
"For the sake of the security of the dignitary, in this case the President-and Vice President-Elect, the Secret Service does not allow release of travel routes or times in advance, so unfortunately there was nothing to announce ahead of time.
"Many of us were stuck in the same traffic mess. This is not something we have a say in and regrettably for us, this closure of the interstate in Ky at this time of day, resulted in major traffic problems getting in and out of downtown Cincinnati this evening."