Traffic study finds safety issues at intersection

AULD’S COVE: Because the construction of the new Irving Big Stop in Auld’s Cove has left motorists confused and has drawn criticism as to which turning lane drivers should be using, video monitoring is now taking place to try to remedy the situation.

During their regular monthly council meeting on January 6, Mulgrave Town Council was informed by the Minister of Transportation Lloyd Hines that Dartmouth-based Harbourside Transportation Consultants had been hired to conduct a traffic and operations safety review, which has already found issues with the intersection.

The Town of Mulgrave raised concerns regarding Exit 40 and how it poses challenges for vehicles turning off Highway 334. Residents from Mulgrave using the exit to the town from the highway have reported many close calls with transfer trucks using the wrong lane while turning into the Irving Big Stop, which re-opened in August.

Mayor Ralph Hadley suggested the Big Stop located at the intersection is used by thousands of commuters on a weekly basis and many professional truck drivers aren’t familiar with the new layout, which is causing vehicles to use the wrong lane to turn into the gas station.

“Lloyd said that they are on top of it, they realize it is a safety hazard and that they are going to rectify the problem there,” he said. “It’s great that we reached out to do this, [but] we shouldn’t have to. They spent millions of dollars there putting that infrastructure in there, they should have looked at the safety concerns.”

Hadley added council’s wishes are for the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal to resolve this issue with the intersection before any major collisions occur.