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Top Cop made the call to suspend EBD third lane; Ramjattan apologizes

A crowded Demerara Harbour Bridge as commuters make their way to Georgetown

Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan on Thursday clarified that the decision to suspend the third lane on the East Bank Demerara EBD Traffic madness: “We will review it tomorrow”- Traffic Chief which caused chaos and public outcry on Tuesday and Wednesday was one which the commissioned of Police Leslie James made. The minister then apologized for the discomfort it caused to motorists and commuters.

“It is the commissioner to make the call and he made the call” Ramjattan told the press.

He further stated that the decision to close the lane was once which fell under the umbrella of trials and errors as the force was responding to complaints which the commissioner of police and Traffic Chief were receiving from persons who were trying to get to school and work along the East bank heading south.

“These are operational matter an operational matters are handled by the police and if upon that handling of it, it does have huge other problem, well then we resolve it, it is like you have to do certain things by trial and errors and the minuet we realised that there some negatives about it we have corrected it” the Security Minister stated at his Brickdam Thursday morning.

A traffic police escorts the first vehicle to reopen the third lane heading north along the East Bank Carriageway on Thursday morning

On Thursday morning, the south-bound East Bank Carriage returned to a tow lane for traffic heading in the opposition direction as the police sought to ease the congestion caused by the numerous vehicles heading into the city. The decision to revert to the three lane was done following numerous public outcries from persons who was stranded for hours in long lines of traffic.

Prior to the decision to suspend the third lane which has been in existence for a number of years, the police force did not issue any advisory or notice to the public so motorists were caught off guard when the system was activated on Tuesday morning.

“To placate them apparently, he tried it out but it was totally in my view not an advisable thing to do so I rather suppose that this morning it would be restored to traffic in the morning coming into Georgetown there must be three lanes, one on the other side of the road and one going it in the afternoon it will be tree lanes in the afternoon like normal. It did create, a lot of people called me with a lot of vexation and I have to apologize so we are going to correct the situation.” Subject minister Ramjattan explained.

The photo taken from the overpass at the junction of the DHB and EBD shows the north bond traffic on the right and the south bond traffic on the left

He said that one of the other measures which will be implemented to fix the situation would be the huge sand trucks and those ferrying containers which use the East Bank Demerara road in the morning. Ramjattan noted that in these cases, it is the majority who are affected and the ministry and the police will address those concerns.

“We will have to do is to get the big trucks carrying containers and sand and so on off the road during those morning hours that’s also an additional kind of instruction so that we can ease that thing, a lot of people live on the East Bank now that come to work in Georgetown and they are saying that sometimes these big trucks park on the road and block them” he noted.

According to Ramjattan there will need to be a better arrangement in place to deal with all these issues while noting that the problem is compounded by the number of vehicles which come into the country each year and the absence of the parallel road to the East Bank which has not yet been constructed, something he said will have to be done soon.

He said that those who have been complaining about the congestion in the morning while heading south along the East Bank are public servants, business operatives and school children alike.