Ministry staff verbally abused
By LARA PICKFORD-GORDON Friday, July 20 2012
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Merry-go-round: Barriers have been put in place at Roxy Roundabout to prevent a gridlock of motorists seeking access to Damien Street, Woodbrook. Inst...
Ministry of Works and Infrastructure personnel, have this week been the brunt of verbal abuse from the public, with the implementation of the new traffic management plan for west Port-of- Spain.
While the workers have been told the plan is “madness” and “will not work,” some citizens are so hostile they are even using obscene language to the ministry staff as they went about their duties in relation to implementation of the plan, which took effect from Monday.
At the sidewalk near the Roxy Roundabout, Maurice McEachnie, Traffic Signals Supervisor, and staff were observing the flow of traffic. “Yuh think it really make sense what allyuh doing,” an elderly man shouted at them. Other persons passing vented their displeasure with the changes.
However, McEachnie said motorists were sticking to their old habits, and not paying attention to the street signs.
This was evident yesterday as a woman was seen driving up Damien Street although it has been turned into a one-way since Monday. McEachnie said the woman motorist was not the only person doing this. He said when police were not visible, motorists were “doing what they want.”
Personnel from the traffic signals section were busy painting signs on the road for motorists.
McEachnie said things would get easier if motorists took time to familiarise themselves, and plan their routes.
Because of this, he observed, that some persons were making their routes unnecessarily long.
He gave the example of a maxi-taxi driver who could have made “one or two turns less” if he had planned his route.
To minimise the congestion at the Roxy roundabout, a barricade has been installed to prevent cars from proceeding around the roundabout and down Damien Street. There was congestion at the intersection of the roundabout. Cars were trying to go down Damien Street while the flow of traffic was from Tragarete towards Western Main Road. The barricade seems to have confounded some motorists who slowed down before proceeding along St Clair Avenue.
McEachnie said motorists will now have to go along St Clair Avenue, down Broome Street, or Havelock, and turn right on Tragarete to get to Damien Street. “We did say changes would be implemented as we go along,” he said.
He said zebra crossing and lights will be installed to assist pedestrians trying to cross the busy Ariapita Avenue and Western Main roads. Although concerns have been raised about persons speeding” on these roads, McEachnie said the speed limit has not changed. It was still 50km per hour. He said it was up to the police to enforce the law.