Jan 1, 2013 10:44 AM by AP
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The new year is bringing free rush-hour tow trucks to help keep traffic flowing on one of the nation's busiest bridges.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development says a tow truck will be stationed on the Crescent City Connection Bridge for three hours in the morning and three in the evening on weekdays - usually 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
"A dedicated tow service truck will speed the removal of disabled vehicles from the bridge during peak hours," Assistant Secretary Rhett Desselle said in a news release.
The state truck will tow disabled vehicles to staging areas where commercial services can take over the towing.
More than 156,000 vehicles a day and more than 33 million a year cross the twin span, making it one the fifth-busiest bridge in the country, according to the department.
It operates two other Motorist Assistance Patrol tow services on Interstate 10 bridges: one on the Mississippi River Bridge in Baton Rouge and the other on the High Rise Bridge in eastern New Orleans
Standard services, including changing a flat tire or jump starting a vehicle, are available in the New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Shreveport and Lake Charles regions, according to the news release.