LA traffic steers clear of 'Carmageddon' fears

July 17, 2011 - 4:29 AM
APTOPIX California Carmageddon

This aerial photo shows Interstate 405 in Los Angeles on Saturday, July 16, 2011. The Getty Center is seen at right. A 53-hour shutdown of a 10-mile stretch of one of the region's most critical freeways began Saturday to allow partial demolition of the Mulholland Drive bridge. (AP Photo/M.Heller)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — It's been anything but "Carmageddon." But Southern California drivers haven't steered clear of trouble just yet.

The traffic many thought would be a nightmare has instead been lighter than normal as Los Angeles neared the halfway point of the weekend-long shutdown of a 10-mile stretch of one of the region's most critical freeways — Interstate 405 — to allow partial demolition of a bridge.

For months motorists were warned to stay home or find new routes during the closure, and on Saturday most people listened.

But some officials including Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa were worried that drivers would get complacent and return to the roads on Sunday, so the warnings continued.

The freeway is scheduled to reopen early Monday.