Miscommunication snarls traffic in Picayune
Miscommunication has caused a major headache in the City of Picayune over the past few days for those driving in and around the area of downtown. Norfolk Southern Railroad began construction on the four railroad crossings that allow commuters to enter and exit the Picayune business district. Drivers have been diverted to the crossing at Martin Luther King or the overpass at Highway 43 to reach the western side of the City.
City Manager Jim Luke is very upset that Road Safe, a company contracted by Norfolk Southern to handle traffic control, failed to notify the City that this work was due to begin, thus causing drivers significant delays on their way to work, school, and home. Police Chief Freddie Drennan understandably voiced his concern to Road Safe about the ability for first responders to reach citizens in need.
City officials said that expenses accrued from having additional officers working traffic control would be billed to Road Safe. WRJW News spoke with Mr. Matt Woody, an official with Road Safe, and he stated that the employees that failed to notify the City of these closures were terminated immediately and that further communication with the City will not be an issue.
Mr. Woody said that the MLK crossing will be closed for 3 or 4 hours Wednesday while it is smooth paved and Canal, Goodyear, and 5th Streets will continue being worked on but allow traffic to flow using one side at a time. Road Safe says they hope the crossings will be completed by Thursday, January 14th.
On Tuesday afternoon, Woody sent an email to the Picayune Police Department: