ORLANDO, Fla. -- Florida transportation officials threatened contractors working on Interstate 4 with more financial penalties Thursday after sections of the roadway flooded again Wednesday during heavy rains.
- I-4 flooded in 2 locations after rain Wednesday
- FDOT officials: Flooding should not be happening
- Officials met with engineers, contractors Thursday
- RELATED: Central Florida weather: Thursday to see another round of storms
In two locations of I-4 -- near Florida's Turnpike and at Kaley Avenue and Michigan Street -- lanes pooled with water, forcing motorists into one or two lanes.
A similar incident happened along another section in March.
After Wednesday's incident, Florida Department of Transportation officials called a meeting with engineers, construction leadership and contractors to "demand that some further action be taken," FDOT spokesman Steve Olson said.
Olson said FDOT made financial deductions to the contract after the March 20 issues. Although it was a different section of road than Wednesday's incidents, the penalty of more deductions may be the same.
"We are discussing that," Olson said. "We are discussing looking at more contractual deductions due to this issue Wednesday night."
The area on I-4 with the worst flooding Wednesday night was the eastbound lanes near Florida's Turnpike. The right two lanes were the most affected. FDOT wasn't able to clear the lanes until 11:40 p.m. for the first lane and 12:15 a.m., Thursday, for the other.
The stretch near Kaley Avenue flooded again Thursday morning, though not as severely.
"It was scary, but thank God, everybody went slowly," I-4 motorist Jeanette Rivera said.
The Band-Aid fix now, Olson said, is to have FDOT resources on standby, ready to help if rain continues to create flooding problems. The agency had crews out Thursday and will the rest of the week -- which is forecast for more rain -- to assess areas that might be prone to flooding and making sure there are obstructions for the drainage. An independent team is out as well, conducting similar assessments and assistance, he said.
The more long-term solution, though, is to ensure the I-4 contractors are working to fix the problem, Olson said.
"They heard our demands, and we will see what happens," he said.