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Nov 29, 2005

CITCO: No one can fix traffic lights at Freetown intersection

Story PictureFor months, crossing the intersection at Cinderella Plaza has been a game of Russian roulette. The dangerous condition at one of the busiest parts of the city is attributed to the fact that the traffic lights have not been working for the past five months. And according to City Councillor responsible for traffic, Adrian “Danny” Madrid, the lights will stay off for a quite a while longer. In the interim, the department has been using traffic officers to direct vehicles. Madrid says he is aware that it is a concern and numerous complaints have been lodged. This afternoon, Madrid explained why the Belize City Council has been unable to fix the problem.

Adrian ?Danny? Madrid, Councillor, Traffic
?The lights at the Freetown junction were actually made by a Belizean. Unfortunately, he left the country and we do not have the diagrams or how to fix it and that has been the problem. Our own technician has been looking at and trying our best to understand and try to repair the light. We have found it now, we know what we want, but now the problem is to try and find the special relays that we need. Unfortunately, there was a hurricane in Miami and that was the source were we were supposedly getting it and it didn?t happen and we are hoping, hoping that by next week we get it and we will try to get the lights going because now we know what to do. But what we have decided to do in the meantime, as you know in the rush hours we have our traffic officers conducting traffic and what we are going to do hopefully starting tomorrow is to put a four way stop sign, which then we will try to ask the public to abide by that four way stop sign. It works in other countries where there are no lights and it?s only a courtesy. The person who reaches there first passes, the second person continues, the third and the fourth. And I can say it doesn?t work much here in Belize, as drivers we are not too courteous to one another. But we are going to put it and put an officer there to try and show them that until we get the lights going this can work. It?s a four way stop sign if you get there first you pass and second and third person, so let?s hope that will work. Yes we have received concerns from citizens about the problem and we have been trying to figure out what to do so we came up with this four way stop sign.?

?We have gotten quotations for new lights and in trying to work with our own locals we end up with this problem, so apparently now we have to order them with special diagrams so that when we have problems we know exactly what to do. And we have gotten quotations and we?re looking into it.?

Madrid says there is a similar situation with the traffic light at the corner of Hyde’s Lane and North Front Street. Alternate measures are also being considered at that location.

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