IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - The eclipse came and so did the people. Just how many? An estimated 300,000, possibly more, traveled into the path of totality in eastern Idaho, according to Idaho Falls officials.
Even though traffic was backed up all along the highway and interstate, the transportation department is happy with how things turned out.
"We had no crashes, no fatalities in Eastern Idaho," Bruce King, Idaho Transportation Department, said. "With all the additional traffic, we're very grateful that we came out that way."
Many months of planning went into getting ready for the additional 30,000 cars that came to Eastern Idaho yesterday.
"We had done everything we could do," King said. "All lanes, all available lanes were open. Construction and maintenance were suspended wherever possible."
There were as many as 3,500 cars per hour coming north from Pocatello. Though the numbers were high, traffic still went smoothly. All of the planning paid off.
"Everything overall went very very well," Chief Dave Hanneman, Idaho Falls Fire Department, said. "It was a lot of planning. We had started working on this since last October. So hopefully everybody had a great time and we can get back to normalizing our activity now."
The Idaho Transportation Department is estimating more than 160,000 visitors came to Idaho from out-of-state between August 18 and 21. The bulk of the visitors came from Utah and Oregon.
Areas where the traffic was busiest include I-15 between Utah and Idaho Falls, US-93 near Craters of the Moon, US-20 near Arco, ID-95 from Payette to Riggins, and ID-55 north of Eagle.