‘Stop means stop,’ says Bay Roberts mayor

By Craig Westcott

Drivers in Bay Roberts last week were given a warning to pay more attention to the rule changes at some intersections.
Mayor Walter Yetman raised the matter at the beginning of the public council meeting, even before adopting the agenda for the evening.
Yetman noted at least two residents contacted council about the dangerous situations at the Town’s new three-way stop on Cross Road and four-way traffic stop on Barracks Road where some drivers are barreling through the intersections without stopping.
Last fall, council adopted a policy to add three-way and four-way stops at busy intersections in an effort to calm traffic speeds and better regulate the flow of traffic. Barracks Road and Cross Road were the first streets to see the policy implemented, with plans to add new signage and adopt the practice at a half dozen or so other intersections in the coming months. But some drivers are having trouble adapting to the change in driving practices.
“It’s a four-way stop,” said Yetman. “‘Stop’ means stop. It doesn’t mean go, it doesn’t mean slow. ‘Stop’ means stop. So, when we say four-way stop, you have to stop.”
After getting the complaints, the mayor added, the Town called the RCMP the following day and asked the police to monitor the intersections until council could meet to see if there is anything it can do.
“They did act very quickly,” Yetman said. “And we certainly appreciate it very much. They were there within two to three hours. They had a marked car on Cross Road and an unmarked car on Barracks.”
The police discovered numerous breaches of the rules, Yetman said, with as many as 15 drivers having to be stopped by the police within one hour. “That’s a lot, and they thought the situation was ridiculous… After seeing what they saw, they want to do more monitoring of the situation.”
The situation on Barracks Road was worse than Cross Road, said the mayor, and in some cases involved high speeds. He’s worried such instances could lead to a serious accident.
Yetman said the new stops were implemented in an effort to “calm” traffic and make things safer, but unfortunately, they are not working. That’s why it’s necessary to have the RCMP monitor the intersections until the Town can get the word out about the changes.
“Please abide by the stop sign,” said Yetman. “I just want to mention that and thank the RCMP for doing that, and we will continue to take steps to do traffic calming.”

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