From next week drivers in St. Kitts will have to contend with traffic lights in the Basseterre area, commissioned and in use for the first time when the switch is flipped on Monday by Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis the Hon. Dr. Timothy Harris
The lights are mounted on Fort Street, Cayon Street, Victoria Road, the Bay Road, as well as Wellington Road and East Independence Square Street.
According to Transport Minister the Hon. Ian Patches Liburd, the light would be turned on and become operational from Monday.7
“The lights have been tested they are fully operational as we speak…We anticipate that God’s willing the Prime Minister will ‘flip the switch’ on Monday 12th of this month. We had to postpone the earlier schedule date due to his pending travel overseas.”
Liburd stated up until then the road markings are being completed and the requisite legal amendments have been made to govern motorists and pedestrians, for when the lights become fully operational.
He said, “Regulations that are pertinent to ensuring that the traffic users and pedestrians conform to the new safety standards, they would be gazetted I am assured by the Attorney General’s office sometime during the course of next week.”
The current traffic lights mounted around Basseterre are only phase one of the project which cost an estimated USD$572,000.
Phase two of the project will look at installing lights at upper Wellington Road, Sandown Road and the upper Bay Road.
The traffic depart also issued some new guidelines that will govern the flow of traffic in surrounding areas to the lights
With the introduction of Traffic lights at these intersections, it has become necessary to restrict right turns into the following streets, to facilitate the smooth flow of traffic:
- Victoria Road from Cayon Street.
- Rosemary Lane
- West Independence Square St. from Cayon St.
- Wellington Road from Pond Road.
- Cayon Street from New Street.
- Stainforth St. from Pond Road.
- Bay Road from West Square St.
- Burt Street from Cayon St.
- Hart Street from Cayon Street.
It was also indicated that parking has been restricted along portions of the streets leading to the signalized junctions.
“Yellow markings have been placed in these areas to indicate the restricted parking portions. Vehicles parked in these restricted areas are likely to impede the smooth flow of traffic and will, therefore, be subject to parking fines or to be towed away at the owners’ expense.”
Pedestrians are required to cross the road in the vicinity of the Traffic Lights, only on pedestrian crossings, and only when given the signal to cross. Failure by a pedestrian to cross on the cross walk or only when signalled to cross, can result in bodily injury from passing vehicles, prosecution, with fines up to $500.00.
They also implored members of the general public to familiarize themselves with the rules governing the use of the signal lights.