Birmingham () - A mysterious spot on I-65 just past the UAB exit heading south has defied explanation despite the best efforts of all those involved. Traffic is known to slow to a crawl on this stretch of interstate at seemingly random times throughout the day. Engineers from ALDOT have been collecting data from vehicle traffic counters, speed detection devices, and even time lapse videos in an effort to explain the slowdowns. No amount of analysis provides a satisfactory explanation of the phenomenon. "The effect really does appear random," said ALDOT division chief Brian Davis. "There is no way for our data to explain it. What is really odd is that we don't even see brake lights coming on during these slowdowns. It is as if some invisible field is holding the cars back."
In order to test his field hypothesis, Davis brought in researchers from Orgone Labs to investigate. The group had with them the latest in orgone accumulators
which they deployed along the interstate and in roving vehicles. "We didn't notice a statistical difference in orgone energy before, during, or after one of these slowdowns," said Kevin Courtois the Orgone director. "As far as we can tell, the orgone energy level has nothing to do with these slowdowns. However, the overall levels in Birmingham seem to indicate that many households could benefit from an orgone generator, available on our website."
Lack of an orgone solution led ALDOT to ask for help from officials at the Santa Cruz Mystery Spot. "We have been in business since 1939 and I can honestly say we have never seen anything quite like this," said director Dean Winchester. "We tested for unusual amounts of carbon dioxide and, although pretty high, they were no higher than in the rest of Jefferson County. We also did not feel the presence of any fields that might have come from unearthly metals or spacecraft buried by extraterrestrials." Based upon a speculation by Winchester, ALDOT requested the assistance of Keith Taylor a resident of Gravity Hill Road in Sylacauga. "I wasn't able to help them though," said Taylor. "They had already done a survey, and the interstate actually had only a 1% grade at the slowdown point. Certainly not enough to cause an almost complete halt to the traffic."
Baffled by the lack of explanation, ALDOT officials sought out the North Alabama Ghost Hunters Society (NAGHS) for help. "This isn't the sort of paranormal activity we are used to looking for," said ghost hunter Samuel Thompson. "We usually hear about cold spots in houses or strange lights or sounds, usually at night. To be asked about something on a scale this immense was a bit intimidating." Unfortunately, NAGHS was unable to provide clues as to what might be causing the traffic slowdowns. "We did get some indications of unquiet spirits during our two night vigil," said Thompson. "When examining the DVR recordings for EVP
, one of our hunters distinctly heard the name Ollie being repeated over and over. She also remembered feeling particularly hungry that night."
At present, the slowdowns remain unsolved, but ALDOT is confident that widening I-65, which will correspond with the opening of the I-22 interchange in 2020, will cause the problem to disappear.