Traffic was so bad at LaGuardia Airport Friday evening that people were getting out of idling cars on the roadways around the airport to walk to the terminal.
Chopper 4 over the airport Friday showed long lines of cars backed up on the Grand Central Parkway, and people getting out on the ramp leading to the airport to walk with suitcases in tow.
A News 4 crew headed to the airport Friday evening started encountering the jam about five miles away.
Port Authority sources told News 4 that the backup was caused by a construction vehicle clipping a street bridge. The vehicle's unretracted boom hit the underside of the 102nd Street bridge, the sources said.
The bridge passes over the Grand Central Parkway, connecting a roundabout at Ditmars Boulevard in East Elmhurst with the airport's C and D terminals.
The construction vehicle was removed and engineers immediately arrived to work to secure the bridge, sources said. The accident happened during the peak hour for combined departures and arrivals, leading to extensive delays.
The Traffic Command Center continued to closely monitor the traffic and deploy personnel where necessary, and Port Authority police are directing traffic. Traffic was starting to move and both lanes were open on LaGuardia Road shortly before 7 p.m.
Police from Port Authority and the airport were working to safeguard errant walkers.
Fliers have regularly been encountering long delays at LaGuardia Airport, where construction on a new terminal is underway, and it hasn't been uncommon for people to ditch their taxis on the highway to rush to the airport on foot.