Minister apologises as traffic jams worsen

| 03/10/2019 | 191 Comments
Cayman News Service
Traffic on the Esterley Tibbetts Highway

(CNS): Frustrations were running high Thursday morning among drivers commuting into George Town from the Eastern Districts as the traffic was more jammed than ever. Several readers contacted CNS to raise concerns after experiencing worsening congestion on the roads coming into town, with traffic said to be backed up into Savannah before 6:30am. Social media was littered with posts about the jams, and the ministry issued an apology.

Although no official explanation has been given for the further increase in congestion Thursday, a number of CNS readers pointed to the possibility of it being due to police diverting traffic at the Red Bay Roundabout. However, the RCIPS said that was not the cause. We have also contacted government about the worsening problem and what is causing it.

In his short statement acknowledging the issue, Planning Minster Joey Hew gave no indication why things were worse than ever but appealed for drivers’ patience.

The Ministry of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure is aware of the extreme traffic delays experienced by motorists coming out of the Eastern Districts this morning, particularly from the Prospect community,” Hew stated.

“We apologise to members of the motoring public for the inconvenience. We ask for continued patience as the Ministry of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure, National Roads Authority and the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service work together to roll out interim solutions as we seek to find the right balance to our traffic flow.”

The minister added that they will keep the public updated on the short and long term plans to ease this mounting congestion.

Plans for a new diversion announced earlier this week were pulled before they were implemented and police have been using the RCIPS chopper to assess the morning flow, but it is not clear if the diversion will be going into effect anytime soon.

Meanwhile, over on the Esterley Tibbetts Highway, commuters from the west, who usually enjoy a much better time of it, were also bumper to bumper Thursday afternoon. This was a result of the extensive and ongoing roadworks at the Island Heritage Roundabout.

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Category: Local News

Comments (191)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Everyone knows the problems: no grown-up transport system and too many damned cars. Both caused by vested business interests.

    Introduce a rule that for every car imported, one has to be crushed. Those importing a car actually have to buy an old banger too to crush it. At least that’ll stabilise car numbers on island and discourage profligate car-buying.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Stop approving work permits that are bringing in more unqualified expats and their friends and family members

  3. Anonymous says:

    More roads will not fix the traffic problem, less cars will. A great start would be to increase the costs of maintaining personally owned vehicles (i.e. licensing costs, car loans, car insurance, numbers of cars per household, driver’s license restrictions, restrictions on cars imported, etc.). Once people really start understanding that owning a car is a luxury item and not an item to just be collected, I believe then things will start to change.

  4. Anon says:

    Having just relocated to Lower Valley from West Bay (I work on WBR) just reading this makes my head hurt! PLEASE hurry with the Newlands Extension and expansion!!!

  5. Anonymous says:

    I know 3 people that got brand new cars last month during the push to get rid of the 2019 models to make room for the 2020 models. Each quickly sold their older model cars online.
    I’ll be keeping my 2006 on the road as long as possible…

  6. Local says:

    Just make some of the roads one way. All lanes on shamrock rd from Countryside one way to Red Bay and all Lanes from Red Bay to end of Newlands Bypass one way. Add connecting rds at poindexter and meadolark

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