New stop signs have Shreveport drivers seeing red - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

New stop signs have Shreveport drivers seeing red

Shreveport police officers talk to motorists who failed to obey the new stop signs. Shreveport police officers talk to motorists who failed to obey the new stop signs.
Drivers appear oblivious to new stops signs at the intersection of Fannin and Douglas. Drivers appear oblivious to new stops signs at the intersection of Fannin and Douglas.

By Katrina Webber - email | bio

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Some new stop signs at a downtown Shreveport intersection have some drivers seeing red.  And the sudden change will have people shelling out dollars to pay for citations.

The stop signs were put into place Thursday on eastbound Fannin Street, at the intersection of Douglas Street, in response to a recent city council vote that turned Fannin from a one way street into a two way.

Because the road now has traffic traveling in both directions, the city is required to install stop signs there, according to city traffic engineer Michael Erlund.

The problem some drivers have, though, is that the signs were installed--and are being enforced-- without any prior warning.

"I've been coming through here for three years and I knew there's not been a stop sign," argued one woman as a Shreveport police officer wrote her a ticket Friday morning.

The woman was one of four drivers, at the time, who had been pulled aside for failing to stop at the signal.

"What we're doing is...letting them know it's here," said Cpl. D. J. Gardner.  "We are issuing citations because there have been several near-misses."

Gardner, who works in the Shreveport Police Department's traffic division, said he had been ordered to the intersection by a supervisor after the department received a complaint about people ignoring the new signs.

But some people believe the enforcement came too soon.

"I figured they would be warning people rather than writing tickets," said T. J. Mandina, who owns a grocery store nearby.  "It's gonna take people--a creature of habit, (time to change).  They've been doing that for a number of years."

During the time a KSLA News 12 crew was on the scene, a police supervisor arrived and ordered the officers to go easier on drivers by issuing warnings instead of tickets.

"After a period of about 8 to 10 days we'll institute a heavier hand of enforcement, if need be," said Capt. David McDaniels.

Mike Strong, the city's Director of Operational Services, told KSLA News 12 the changes at the intersection are due to the construction of the new Millenium movie studio nearby.

Strong said plans call for closing off the western portion of Fannin Street all together to accommodate the new complex.

He said the change will take place within two or three months, resulting in Fannin dead-ending at Douglas Street from the downtown area.

  

  

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