An early Sunday morning rock slide has closed Interstate 40 in both directions at mile marker 3 in Haywood County, North Carolina. Work on the cleanup and repair of the road will begin immediately, but NC DOT officials say it could take as long as three months to completely fix the highway. The last exit open on I-40 westbound is Exit 20 at US Highway 276 to Maggie Valley.
In the meantime, the NC DOT and is recommending that through travelers from the east take a detour on Interstate 26 west from Asheville to Johnson City, Tennessee, then Interstate 81 south to Knoxville. Travelers headed to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park can take US 276 through Maggie Valley, Cherokee, and beyond.