A group of Good Samaritans helped clear a tree that was blocking both westbound lanes of Interstate 16 in Macon near Exit 6 on Monday afternoon.

”We got stuck – we were the first ones that saw this tree come down,” said Mike Crate, who evacuated from his home in south Florida to seek refuge from Hurricane Irma.

He was traveling back down when he encountered the fallen tree.

”The only thing we could do is move that tree,” said Crate.

Georgia Department of Transportation crews were ordered to wait until the storm calmed before going out to clear debris.

Crate and two truckers took straps, tied them to tree limbs, and connected the other end to the front ends of the 18-wheelers, backing up and snapping the branches off one-by-one. A Georgia State Patrol officer blocked traffic.

”Whatever we can do – all the crews are tied up trying to clear stuff. Look down the line, see how much it’s backed up? We don’t have much choice. Either sit in it or try to make the best we can,” said Ed Porter, who was transporting a deliver from Sandersville to Macon.

With deadlines to meet, they quickly cleared the mess.

”It’s pretty amazing how everybody got together,” said Crate.