Easterners promised better traffic

Motorists from the Eastern districts contending with lengthy queues can expect their morning commute to ease up somewhat as reconstruction work on Shamrock Road in the Spotts area nears completion.

‘This should bring considerable relief to the morning rush hour,’ said Edward Howard, Deputy Managing Director of the National Roads Authority.

He noted with the change in school hours, there has been a shift in the morning traffic flow. The majority of primary and secondary schools now start the day at 8am instead of the usual 8.30am.

‘The rush hour is a lot earlier now. Those who used to leave before 7am are now meeting the heavy traffic because people are leaving earlier to get their kids to school.’

The Spotts roadwork is expected to be complete within two weeks. The work involves rebuilding the second westbound lane along the stretch between Spotts Newlands and Old Prospect Road, which was damaged Hurricane Ivan in September.

Howard said the construction of the second westbound lane was part of a larger program to alleviate congestion. The project, along with Hirst-Shamrock road intersection improvements, is designed to pull traffic through the Savannah-Newlands area all the way through to Old Prospect Road.

He said traffic flow along Harbour Drive should also improve shortly as upgrades are made to the two traffic signals on the waterfront.

The lights at Fort Street and by the National Museum operate on a fixed-time basis. Video cameras equipped with sensors are to be installed next week. The cameras enable the lights to operate automatically to respond to the varying traffic conditions.

The traffic signals at the other six intersections on the island have already been outfitted with the cameras.

Meanwhile, the Royal Cayman Islands Police say accidents and traffic offences are on the increase, with reports of such offences as speeding, dangerous driving and failing to wear seatbelts. Two fatalities have occurred as a result of vehicle accidents so far this year.