Today’s Editorial September 11: Traffic solutions needed

Something has to give.

The morning traffic since the schools have reopened has been, in a word, dreadful.

The morning commute to school and/or work is now taking two or three times as long as it was last month.

And because John Gray High School is no longer on the shift system, the traffic is even worse than it was last year.

Something has to give, and the schools aren’t going to change their hours. So, what can the rest of us do?

One thing we can do is start leaving earlier to drop the kids off for school. We can also get to work earlier. You don’t necessarily have to start working earlier; you could always read the Caymanian Compass while sipping a cup of coffee while you wait for your workday to begin.

Beyond that, we’d need to change some of our habits, and get some local businesses to cooperate, too.

The RCIPS’s Head of Traffic Management Department, Chief Inspector Courtney Myles, thinks the best long-term solutions to the traffic problems might be carpooling and flexible working hours.

When there are multiple people in the same household heading to work in the same direction, carpooling can certainly be an option. It might mean packing a lunch, or ordering lunch delivered for some people, but every car eliminated from the traffic flow is a help. It’s probably more quite workable if you try it. And it will save money too, especially with the price of gasoline the way it is.

As for flexible working hours, that is usually up to employers. Just because a business opens at 8:30am or 9am, doesn’t mean every one of its employees needs to start at that time. Perhaps some employees can start earlier and get off earlier, or start later and get off later. We here at Cayman Free Press allow that for some of our employees.

The Government does have some planned road works which will help the situation. Eventually, the Linford Pierson Highway will be extended to Walkers Road, where many of Grand Cayman’s schools are located.

While that will undoubtedly help the morning traffic problem in the long term, something has to give now. And that something requires changes to old habits of private individuals and businesses.

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