Every town has its traffic trouble spots. On this episode of Traffic Troubles, The Next Street visited Officer Soccio with the New London Police Department. We talked about what some of the department's major concerns were when it came to traffic within New London and went to visit them. One thing to keep in mind about New London, which is something that happens to a lot of other smaller cities, is that the roads were built a long time ago. Meaning, when built, the growth of the city was not a major concern, so being able to handle so much traffic was not expected. Officer Soccio went over why these areas were concerning and how, and when, to avoid trouble in these areas.
Our first spot was on Lincoln Avenue, where Officer Soccio explained how parents picking up their children after school will sometimes double and triple park on the road which causes a major traffic issue. However, he did mention that they do patrol the area and try to keep parents moving to clear it up as soon as they can. Next, we visited a major intersection on Bank Street, and Ocean Street which is what Officer Soccio described as a major “artery” within the city when it comes to traffic. He went on to explain that during rush hour the major intersection gets so busy that it often causes the issue of “blocking the box”, which is when cars get stuck in in the middle of the intersection when trying to take a left turn. In this intersection it will eventually lead to “grid lock”, meaning no one is able to move which can back up roads well beyond the intersection. Lastly, we visited beautiful downtown New London that is brought to life from a lot of visitors that are using the ferry to travel to Block Island. With its welcoming store fronts and variety of restaurants it was obvious to see that there was some traffic trouble here. A major concern was when cars were taking a right off of Bank Street onto State Street. There are two right turning lanes. After the turn the road itself veers left. Where this happens, often drivers in the right lane seem to drift into the left lane without notice. Which causes the issue of people being cut off and sometimes causes accidents.
Overall, New London and the Officers that protect it have a good handle over these areas. They are working to keep them moving and to keep drivers safe. There are surely more areas than this that were not mentioned that the Officers also stay on top of. It takes a lot of work for them to keep these areas clear but with some help from drivers by being mindful of the tips that are given to possibly avoid these areas and some of the mistakes that are made in these areas it can make driving in the city easier and safer for everyone.
At our New London classroom we teach our new drivers how to correctly handle these trouble spots and others. Visit our page to learn more about our courses and offerings.