Residents and motorists travelling in the northern parish of St Peter on Friday night were left stuck in traffic for approximately two and a half hours due to the 2017 SOL Rally Barbados.
Scores of parked vehicles and thousands of spectators resulted in gridlock along the Portland to Boscobel roadway, forcing those travelling along the route to sit in their vehicles until the races concluded.
The route from Portland to Welch Town was closed, with officials opening it twice to allow buses and others vehicles through.
Barbados Rally Association Public Relations Officer Neil Bernard has apologized to those who were affected.
He told Barbados TODAY that while the association factored in traffic flow in their initial planning, they failed to accurately estimate the large numbers of racing enthusiasts who would turn out to show their support.
“We had done some proper homework in trying to anticipate what the traffic flow and the wave of traffic would have been like. What we did not anticipate was the amount of spectators that would have turned up in that particular area,” Bernard explained.
He indicated that the association conducted a rigorous campaign, informing locals via social media and print media to desist from indiscriminately parking their vehicles, adding that spectators were also given designated parking areas.
But he said some opted out of the designated parking areas and double parked along the Charles Duncan O’Neal Highway to get a closer look at the action.
“The people were not willing to park as far down as All Saints Church and try and walk up the road so they were trying to get closer to where the road was closed and then there seemed to be a problem that occurred,” Bernard said.
“We can’t anticipate every eventuality, that is obviously impossible, but what we will do is that if we have something that needs work we are going to work on that and make sure we try and fix it and minimize any kind of inconvenience as far as we can.”
When contacted police Public Relations Officer, acting Inspector Roland Cobbler said they are aware of the situation.
“This type of disruption will come to the attention of the hierarchy in the Force and the Barbados Rally Association will have to go back to the drawing board with the Royal Barbados Police Force with how they plan and execute those plans,” he said.
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