Traffic jam no problem

Published 3:06 pm Thursday, August 9, 2007

Traffic may be heavy in the mornings on Highway 11 in front of Pearl River Central High School, but PRC School Superintendent Dennis Penton says that’s nothing new.

“Traffic is terrible, but it usually is,” said Penton in a phone interview Tuesday.

The worst part of the traffic, says Penton, is usually between 7:20 a.m. until 7:45 a.m. However, traffic can remain backed up until almost 8:00 a.m.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Penton said on Monday, the first day of school, he went out to the end of the line at about 7:35 a.m., to see how long the wait time would be. “I sat there probably less than 15 minutes,” Penton said. “That’s not unusual for the first day.”

Penton said that typically, traffic backs up somewhere close to one-fourth of a mile, and that it’s been that way for a while. “It’s really bad. It’s just no worse than in previous years,” he said.

Penton said the county has sent sheriff’s deputies to direct traffic during the busiest times, but that doesn’t always help. “If the deputies get called away for an accident or something, (traffic) can get bad,” Penton said.

Penton said he has asked for help from the state, but has heard nothing yet.

“They (the state) told me they would check into it. The school is not authorized to do anything (to fix it),” Penton said.

Penton said either a traffic light or more turning lanes could possibly alleviate some of the problems, but that anything like that would have to come from the state.