Thruway Fact Book
Contact InformationNew York State Thruway Authority/Canal Corporation
200 Southern Boulevard
P.O. Box 189
Albany, NY 12201-0189
(518) 436-2700 or (877) 901-2700 (toll-free) and (800) 253-6244 TDD
The New York State Thruway Authority operates a 570-mile toll facility known for its dependability and safety. The Thruway is one of the longest toll roads in the nation.
The Thruway is a vital commercial link for New York’s largest cities and for the entire Northeast. About one-third of all vehicles using the Thruway are from out of state.
The mainline of the Thruway extends 426 miles, from New York City to Buffalo (I-87 and I-90). Other elements of the system include the New England Thruway (I-95), the Cross Westchester Expressway (I-287), the Garden State Parkway Connector, the Berkshire Connector (I-90), the Niagara Thruway (I-190), and the Erie Section (I-90).
The New York State Thruway is an independent public corporation created in 1950 by the New York State Legislature. The first section of the highway opened in 1954, a 115-mile section near Rochester.
In 1964, the highway system was re-named “The Governor Thomas E. Dewey Thruway” to recognize vision and leadership of the former governor (1943-1954) in the creation of the cross-state superhighway.
The Thruway System
|THE MAINLINE (New York - Buffalo)||426 miles|
|ERIE SECTION (Buffalo - Pennsylvania Line)||70 miles|
|NIAGARA SECTION I-190 (Buffalo - Niagara Falls)||21 miles|
|BERKSHIRE SECTION (Selkirk - Massachusetts Line)||24 miles|
|NEW ENGLAND SECTION (I-95) (Bronx - Connecticut Line)||15 miles|
|GARDEN STATE PARKWAY CONNECTION (Spring Valley - New Jersey)||3 miles|
|CROSS WESTCHESTER EXPRESSWAY (I-287) (Mainline I-87 in Tarrytown - I-95 in Rye)||11 miles|
|New York Thruway||570 miles|
|Oklahoma Turnpike||606 miles|
|Pennsylvania Turnpike||536.5 miles|
|Ohio Turnpike||241 miles|
|Florida Turnpike||460 miles|
|Garden State Parkway (New Jersey)||172.4 miles|
|Indiana Toll Road||157 miles|
|New Jersey Turnpike||148 miles|
|Massachusetts Turnpike||138 miles|
|Connecticut Turnpike||111.6 miles|
- The Thruway is generally a four-lane express highway with two lanes for traffic in either direction, separated by a wide median that ranges up to 1,025 feet in width. Six lanes are available in several higher-traffic regions, as are eight lanes.
- To the right of all highway areas is a stabilized shoulder on which vehicles, including the heaviest trucks, may be parked in the case of a breakdown or other emergency.
- There are no intersections at grade, no sharp curves and no steep hills on the Thruway.
- There are acceleration and deceleration lanes, generally 1,200 feet long, at all interchanges, Travel Plazas and parking areas.
- Sight distance of at least 1,000 feet is provided to eliminate any blind spots for fast-traveling motorists.
- Signs and/or advertising devices may not be posted or maintained within 660 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way, except with specific permission from the Thruway Authority.
The Thruway is a key segment in the vast expressway network in the Northeast. The Thruway connects with:
- The Major Deegan Expressway at the New York City line, giving direct access south to midtown New York City.
- The Connecticut Turnpike at the terminus of the Thruway's New England Section (I-95) in Port Chester.
- The Massachusetts Turnpike at the terminus of the Thruway's Berkshire Section (I-90) in the Town of Canaan.
- Interstate 90, which heads west across the United States.
- New Jersey’s Garden State Parkway at the New Jersey- New York line in Chestnut Ridge, Rockland County.
- Interstate 287, near Suffern in northern Rockland County, connecting with major highways in New Jersey.
- The Adirondack Northway, the northernmost segment of Interstate 87, which extends from Albany north to the Canadian border.
- Interstate 81, which extends from the Pennsylvania line near Binghamton north through Syracuse to the St. Lawrence River and Canada near Alexandria Bay.
- Interstate 88, near Schenectady on the Thruway, extends to Binghamton.
The Thruway cost about $1 billion to build. Costs were relatively low through upstate farmland and higher in heavily populated areas. The cost per mile from New York City to the Pennsylvania line was $1,547,000; with the exception of the 15-mile New England Section, which cost an average of $6,210,000 per mile; and the 21-mile Niagara Section, which cost an average of $5,738,000 per mile.
|New Jersey Turnpike||$2,200,000|
|Pennsylvania Turnpike (Delaware Extension)||$1,970,000|
|Northern Indiana Toll Road||$1,790,000|
|Garden State Parkway||$1,720,000|
|Thruway, New York to Pennsylvania Line||$1,547,000|
|Pennsylvania Turnpike (early construction)||$736,000|
The Thruway’s 27 Travel Plazas, many of them award-winning facilities, offer a variety of restaurants and other services designed to serve Thruway visitors for years to come.
The Travel Plazas are fun and memorable places to stop, with buildings reflecting New York State architecture such as Adirondack lodges, Shaker meeting halls and Hudson River Valley train stations. The Thruway Travel Plazas offer a wide variety of food as well as competitive fuel prices. In addition, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) are available, as are tourist information centers and kiosks, gift shops, Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi), travel safety information, and up-to-date weather and traffic conditions.
All of the Travel Plazas offer family-assist restrooms, allowing people with special needs to get help from a traveling companion in total privacy. Travel Plazas are now fully accessible to travelers with special needs. Also, parents will find diaper changing areas in both men’s and women’s restrooms.Travel Plazas are strategically located about every 30 to 40 miles along the Thruway. All gasoline stations at Thruway Travel Plazas have self-service islands. Upon request, people with disabilities and other travelers who so desire may receive full-service assistance at self-service pumps at self-serve prices.
Tourism Information Centers
Staffed tourism information centers are located at several Travel Plazas and interchanges along the Thruway System. At these centers, Thruway travelers may obtain literature about destinations and attractions in New York State, Thruway maps and directional assistance. Some information centers operate all year; others are seasonal. All information centers at Travel Plazas operate daily from May 1 to October 31, some longer. Highway signs showing "?" and/or "Tourist Info" legends are posted along the Thruway for information centers that are open eight hours a day, seven days a week at Travel Plazas, interchanges or within one mile of a Thruway interchange. View a list of Travel Plaza Tourism Information Centers.
Traffic Regulations and Emergency Service
- Posted speed limits are enforced by State Police Troop T, whose members patrol the Thruway exclusively.
- U-turns are prohibited, except when authorized by State Police or Thruway personnel.
- Do not park in driving lanes, on or under bridges, or in the center median.
- Do not pick up hitchhikers. Both hitchhikers and motorists picking them up are subject to arrest, as New York State law prohibits hitchhiking.
- Pedestrians, bicycles, motor scooters, ATVs, horse-drawn vehicles, snowmobiles and mopeds are all prohibited on the Thruway.
- Keep right except for passing and signal before changing lanes.
- Trucks, buses and vehicles hauling trailers are barred from the left lane on three-lane sections.
- Trucks traveling less than 40 miles per hour must use their flashing lights to warn other vehicles of their slower speed.
- New York State law requires seat belt use and that headlights be turned on when windshield wipers are used.
- Do not stop in the travel lanes with a disabled vehicle. Move well off the roadway, or to the next exit or other safe location. New York State law permits motorists to move vehicles to a safe spot following an accident or breakdown. For your own safety, stay with your vehicle until help arrives. It is illegal to walk along the Thruway.
- For the safety of all Thruway travelers, only authorized Thruway contract garages are allowed to service disabled vehicles on the Thruway. Minor repairs include tire changes, battery boosts, and supplying fuel, oil, water and/or anti-freeze. Thruway fuel stations no longer offer this roadside service.
- Authorized off-Thruway garages handle towing and major repairs that cannot be done along the Thruway. They also provide both roadside and major repairs on the Niagara, New England and I-287 sections.
- A standard roadside service charge prevails 24 hours a day on the Thruway. Labor and materials are additional. These rates are comparable to off-Thruway rates.
- Towing charges by authorized garages for towing are based on initial hook-up and subsequent miles towed and are competitive with off-Thruway prices.
Road Condition Reports
Thruway road condition reports are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling toll-free 1-800-THRUWAY (1-800-847-8929). Reports are updated as conditions change along the 570-mile superhighway.
In August 2006, the Thruway Authority launched the Transportation Regional Advisory Network System (TRANSystem). This free* network of services provides motorists a combination of current and plan-ahead traveler information is delivered through a variety of mechanisms, including for the first time on the Thruway, email alerts (TRANSalerts). The TRANSystem has been designed to provide customers with real-time traffic, weather, construction and emergency information.
Thruway patrons can sign up to receive TRANSalerts via e-mail or text message. The service also offers a “hold” feature which allows commuters to suspend the alerts while on vacation or allow the occasional traveler to only receive alerts when planning and/or taking a trip.
In addition, the TRANSystem provides current, up-to-date traffic and traveler information including unscheduled construction and emergency information on the Authority’s homepage. The Thruway Authority continues to post emergency information on the Highway Advisory Radio (HAR), 1-800-THRUWAY and Variable Message Signs (VMS) along the entire system.
* While the Thruway Authority offers this service free-of-charge to subscribers, fees for text messages may apply depending on the subscriber’s text messaging provider. Customers are encouraged to contact their mobile service providers to find out how text messaging works with their personal mobile devices.
For more information about TRANSystem and the 1-800-THRUWAY information line, or to sign up for the TRANSalerts, please visit the Authority’s website at www.thruway.ny.gov/tas/.
Rest Areas/Park and Ride Lots
There are conveniently located parking areas along the Thruway System where travelers are invited to stop and rest during their trips. There are emergency call boxes at these rest areas that connect directly to the Thruway Statewide Operations Center, located in the Thruway Headquarters Building.
The Thruway Authority does offer several commuter Park and Ride lots across the System. Parking at these commuter lots is posted for a maximum stay of 16 hours, and are not designated for multiple day stays. There are no overnight or long-term parking facilities on the System.
For a complete listing of Park and Ride lots, please visit our traveler's section.
Tolls along the Thruway can be calculated using the On-Line Toll and Distance Calculator.
The controlled system is from Interchange 15 to 50 and from Interchange 55 to 61.
Outside the controlled or ticket system, fixed tolls are collected at barriers across the Thruway.
An annual permit for use on the ticketed portion of the Thruway is available through E-ZPass for a passenger car, motorcycle, or van with two axles and four tires. The permit plan is also available for vehicles displaying U.S. government license plates that meet the same vehicle classification. The permit includes the first 30 miles per trip, with the exception of a 57-cent surcharge for the Castleton-on-Hudson Bridge on the Berkshire Section. Trips taken for more than the 30-mile limit, a full-fare toll is charged beyond the first 30 miles, with a minimum per trip charge of 15 cents. Commuter E-ZPass plans are also available for those who regularly travel on the Tappan Zee Bridge or Grand Island Bridge, or through the New Rochelle, Yonkers and Harriman Toll Barriers.
The Thruway is strictly a user-supported System. Only those who travel the Thruway pay for it. The Thruway Authority receives no State tax dollars and is therefore dependent on toll revenues to operate, maintain and police its roads and bridges. These revenues also allow the Thruway Authority to provide a superior level of maintenance with its Snow-And-Ice Control Program.
Because tolls are a dedicated revenue source, the Thruway Authority is able to provide travelers with a safe, well-maintained and convenient transportation system with superior customer service. The Thruway is among the safest superhighways in the nation, with a fatality rate one-fifth the national average.
In 1991, an independent task force, following two years of public hearings, issued a recommendation that Thruway tolls remain. It was an issue of tolls versus taxes, with tolls perceived as being more equitable since tolls are direct user fees.
In 1989 (Chapter 634), Governor Cuomo and the State Legislature created the Thruway Authority Transition Advisory Council and charged it with the responsibility to "make recommendations concerning the future of the Thruway and the Thruway Authority after the scheduled retirement of the Authority's bondable debt in the year 1996..."
The Advisory Council concluded that tolls were the preferable choice because it was more appropriate for those who actually use the Thruway to pay for its maintenance and upkeep rather than the taxpayers of New York generally. Therefore the Advisory Council recommended to the Legislature and the Governor, that tolls be maintained and that the Thruway Authority, with its bonding ability, be retained to meet the highway transportation needs along the Thruway corridor.
Instead of making the Thruway toll free and returning operation to DOT, in 1992, the Governor and the State Legislature enacted legislation to further expand the responsibilities of the Authority to include the operation and maintenance of the canal system and authorized additional indebtedness secured by toll revenues to assist with the financing of this new responsibility.
Unlike other highways in New York State, the Thruway Authority receives no state tax dollars. As a toll road, only the people who use the Thruway pay for it. In addition, an estimated one-third of all vehicles using the Thruway are from out-of-state.
The New York State Thruway Authority pioneered the use of electronic toll collection in the Northeast when it introduced E-ZPass to travelers in 1993.
The Thruway Authority is a founding member of the 14-state, 24 agency E-ZPass Interagency Group formed in 1990 to establish a single-tag electronic toll collection system to New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
The E-ZPass system was designed as a traffic management tool to ease congestion and make travel more convenient. While all Toll Plaza lanes are equipped to accept E-ZPass, most plazas offer non-stop “E-ZPass Only” lanes, which eliminate the need to wait in line with cash-paying customers.
With E-ZPass, tolls are either pre-paid or post-paid depending on the vehicle and account types. A tag mounted on the vehicle interacts with computers and the appropriate toll is calculated as the vehicle passes through the Toll Plaza. E-ZPass customers, passenger and commercial vehicles, receive a discount on Thruway tolls.
Highway Speed E-ZPass
Highway Speed E-ZPass allows for electronic gathering toll information at speeds of 65 mph.
In January 2007, the Thruway Authority activated its first Highway Speed E-ZPass facility for commercial motorists along the Thruway at the Spring Valley Toll Barrier in Rockland County.
In May 2010, the Thruway Authority opened two Highway Speed E-ZPass lanes for all vehicles at the Woodbury Toll Plaza in Orange County.
The implementation of Highway Speed E-ZPass at Woodbury has helped ease congestion and improve traffic flow through this heavily traveled corridor.
Introduced in 2004, the E-ZPass-On-the-Go Program has made obtaining an E-ZPass more convenient for Thruway motorists. E-ZPass On-the-Go tags are available at more than 745 locations throughout the state including several gift shops located in Thruway travel plazas.
Upon purchasing an On-the-Go tag, customers will receive the full $25 towards their E-ZPass account. E-ZPass provides a savings of 5 percent off the cash rate on all Thruway tolls for passenger vehicles. On-the-Go tags are only available for passenger vehicle use. Customers must register the On-the-Go tag within the first 48 hours of using the tag.
The members who make up State Police Troop T patrol the New York State Thruway exclusively. Night and day, Troop T members perform emergency work at the scene of accidents and summon help for thousands of motorists with disabled vehicles.
Through 2012, the entire annual cost for Troop T's services was borne by the Thruway Authority, which paid the Troopers' salaries, payroll benefits and expenses, and equipment costs with toll revenue. In 2013, the New York state budget included approximately $60 million in assistance to allow the Thruway to end this annual reimbursement for Troop T expenses and help avoid a substantial commercial toll increase.
Troop T issued total of 151,452 tickets in 2012 by using radar teams, low-profile and Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) vehicles, and regular patrols. 66,937 of the 151,452 tickets were for speeding, while 4,664 were for cell phone violations.
A Thruway communications system provides instantaneous communication 24 hours a day among Thruway Authority headquarters, tollbooths, and hundreds of vehicles operated by Troopers, administrators, maintenance and emergency service crews, and toll personnel.
All communications are centralized at Thruway Authority headquarters in Albany. The communications center is staffed by shifts around the clock with a force of civilian dispatchers, senior dispatchers and State Police technical sergeants. The Thruway Authority's communications supervisor oversees technical operations.
Safety and Service
The Thruway Authority is firmly committed to a high level of safety and service. This can only be achieved through a sound and well-maintained infrastructure of highways and bridges.
As a result of innovative and continuous safety improvements and a dedicated State Police Troop, the Thruway has continuously been recognized as one of the safest highways in the nation. The Authority is very proud of its safety record, operating one of the largest and safest superhighways in the nation.
Statistics indicate that 2012 was the safest year in the Thruway's history. The primary measure of safety is the fatality rate, which is calculated as the number of fatalities per 100 million vehicles miles (MVM) traveled. In 2012, with more than 345 million vehicles traveling approximately 8.5 billion miles on the Thruway, there were 17 fatalities resulting from 15 accidents. These statistics reflect a rate of 0.20 fatalities per 100 MVM, the lowest rate in the Thruway's history. In 2010 and 2011, the fatality rates were 0.41 and 0.45 per 100 MVM, respectively.
Specially trained crews maintain the Thruway throughout the year at an annual cost of more than $148 million. More than 1,600 maintenance personnel use about 4,000 different pieces of equipment to maintain the Thruway's roadway, bridges and buildings.
Equipment used includes seven-ton trucks, pavement sweepers, mowing tractors and much more. Of some 1,400 vehicles in use, approximately 400 can be converted into snowplows in the winter.
The four Thruway divisions (Albany, Buffalo, New York and Syracuse) are divided into sections, each of which maintains an average of 28 miles of roadway. Throughout the winter months, special shifts are assigned to control snow and ice 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Some emergency repairs to the roadway and structures are done in the winter as well. During the summer months, major improvements are done on the pavement, bridges, guide railing and shoulders. Pavement-striping, mowing, litter cleanup and patching are routinely done in better weather, but done as needed regardless of weather conditions.
For information about the Authority’s various environmental initiatives, please visit http://www.thruway.ny.gov/environmental/index.html.
Official Thruway Openings
|June 24, 1954||Lowell-Rochester||115||115|
|August 25, 1954||Rochester-Buffalo||63||178|
|September 20, 1954||Lowell-Westmoreland||5||183|
|October 26, 1954||Westmoreland-Newburgh||183||366|
|December 22, 1954||Newburgh-Harriman||15||381|
|May 27, 1955||Harriman-Hillburn||14||395|
|July 1, 1955||Hillburn-Suffern||1||396|
|December 15, 1955||Suffern-Yonkers||27||423|
|August 31, 1956||Yonkers- New York City||3||426|
|November 8, 1956||Grand Island
(Five miles of new Thruway and the Grand Island bridges built in 1935 and acquired by the Authority in 1950)
|August 21, 1957||Silver Creek-Pennsylvania Line||41||474|
|August 30, 1957||Garden State Parkway Connection||3||477|
|December 14, 1957||Silver Creek-Buffalo||29||506|
|October 8, 1958||Berkshire Section
(Route 9 to Mass. Line)
|October 18, 1958||New England Section||15||539|
|May 26, 1959||Berkshire Section
(Route 9 to Mainline)
|July 30, 1959||Niagara Section
(A 6 1/2-mile portion from Buffalo 's east city line to Porter Avenue , and 1 1/2 miles from the South Grand Island Bridge to Sheridan Drive )
|September 2, 1960
December 23, 1960
(Between Porter Avenue and Sheridan Drive in Buffalo , northbound lanes were opened September 2, and southbound lanes were opened December 23)
|October 11, 1962||Second South Grand Island Bridge||---||559|
|December 18, 1964||Second North Grand Island Bridge||---||559|
|April 1, 1991||Cross Westchester Expressway (I-287)
(Acquired by the Authority
from New York State )
|October 21, 1991||Interstate 84
(Also acquired from New York State )
|October 11, 2010||Interstate 84
(Returned to New York State Department of Transportation)
The Tappan Zee Bridge
The 3-mile-long Tappan Zee Bridge (TZB) carries the mainline of the New York State Thruway (I-87/I-287) across the Hudson River between Tarrytown in Westchester County and South Nyack in Rockland County.
The bridge is owned and operated by the Thruway Authority. Prior to the construction of the TZB, only a ferry linked the two counties. The bridge structure is 139 feet above the Hudson River.
The Tappan Zee Bridge, approximately 13 miles north of New York City, provides the only interstate highway crossing of the Hudson River for the 48-mile stretch between the George Washington Bridge (I-95) and the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge (I-84).
The TZB opened to traffic December 15, 1955. Test borings for the TZB were sunk in June 1951. Construction of the bridge began in March 1952. The bridge structure, plus approaches, cost about $80.8 million.
The TZB was designed for a maximum capacity of 100,000 vehicles per day. When the bridge opened in 1955, it carried an average of 18,000 vehicles per day. Currently, it accommodates an average of 134,000 vehicles per day. Peak volumes reach as high as 170,000 vehicles daily.
The name originates from pre-colonial days, when the area was home to the Tappan Indian tribe. “Zee” is the Dutch word for open expanse of water (sea). In 1994, the bridge was rededicated as the "Governor Malcolm Wilson Tappan Zee Bridge” in honor of the former New York governor.
In October 2011, at the direction of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, the Thruway Authority and the New York State Department of Transportation jointly proposed a replacement structure, the “Tappan Zee Hudson River Crossing.” For information about the project, please visit www.newnybridge.com/ .
Tappan Zee Bridge Deck Replacement Project
Beginning in 1996, the Thruway Authority undertook the replacement of the deck that is the driving surface of the Tappan Zee Bridge. When the current contract is completed in 2012, about 96 percent of the decking will have been replaced.
Other upgrades to the bridge include repairs to the superstructure, new lighting and barriers. To minimize the impact on traffic flow, the Thruway Authority directed that the ongoing repairs and re-decking projects be scheduled during off-peak, night time hours. For more information, visit the Tappan Zee Bridge Deck Replacement Project.
Tappan Zee Bridge Falcon Program
In the late 1980s, the Thruway Authority added two falcon-nesting boxes to the TZB. The boxes, which are located high up on the main truss, provide falcons with commanding views of the Hudson River.
The Bridge and the falcons have a symbiotic relationship: The nesting boxes provide falcons with a high perch and the falcons keep pigeons away from the bridge. Pigeon droppings are detrimental to the paint, and consequently, the steel on the Bridge. Before the nesting boxes were added, many pigeons roosted on the TZB.
Falcon-nesting boxes have since been added to three of the Thruway Authority’s other major bridges: the one-mile Castleton Bridge, which spans the Hudson River approximately 10 miles south of Albany; and the two North and two South Grand Island Bridges, which total 2.8 miles in length and span the Niagara River approximately 12 miles south of Niagara Falls.
The nesting boxes vary in size (approximately 24” x 32” x 24”), and are made of wood. A few inches of pea gravel are placed in the bottom of the box, as are drain holes. In order to enable young falcons to exercise their wings without being accidentally pushed out of the box, the boxes are either oversized, or an Astroturf covered perch is provided in front of the box.
The Peregrine Falcon is considered one of the world’s fastest animals. Peregrine Falcons hunt other birds by diving after them and can exceed speeds of 200 mph while diving. Peregrines grow 15 to 20 inches in length, with females typically one-third larger than males. Females typically lay two to four eggs per year, which they incubate while the male hunts for food. The chicks hatch after about 35 days, and both parents then hunt for food for their young. Chicks leave the nest four to five weeks after hatching. Thruway maintenance work is scheduled around the Spring nesting period, in the vicinity of nesting boxes.
Tappan Zee Bridge Toll Operations
A round-trip toll on the TZB is collected from eastbound (south) traffic, while no toll is collected from westbound (north) traffic. This collection system speeds the flow of traffic and improves service to motorists. The toll for passenger cars is fixed; the toll for commercial traffic is based upon vehicle size and time of travel. There are two 35 mph E-ZPass lanes located at the Tappan Zee Bridge toll plaza.View the cash and E-ZPass toll schedules for the Tappan Zee Bridge.
Tappan Zee Bridge Maintenance
The New York State Thruway Authority follows a very stringent and thorough Bridge Inspection Program, as mandated by current Federal and State guidelines, and will continue to do so. Every two years, the Tappan Zee Bridge undergoes an inspection. In addition, interim inspections are conducted on the Tappan Zee Bridge to ensure that the bridge is maintained and operated safely and efficiently.
In addition to the Federal and State inspection guidelines, the Authority conducts hands-on inspections, has an 80-member crew dedicated to Tappan Zee Bridge maintenance and has installed sensors to monitor the stresses in wind bracings as related to wind speed and temperature.
The maintenance crew, headed by a professional Engineer, performs inspections and preventive maintenance of the TZB on a daily basis. The work includes painting, deck repairs, substructure concrete repairs and steel repairs. Since most of the Bridge is over water, tug boats, work boats, barges and several pieces of lift equipment facilitate inspection and maintenance operations. The Thruway Authority furnishes its own personnel and equipment to handle emergency breakdowns of vehicles crossing the Bridge. Disabled vehicles are towed to special parking areas on either side of the Bridge, where Thruway Authority truck operators work 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.