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Charlotte Amalie
Friday, August 19, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesMahogany Road Is No Longer Safe

Mahogany Road Is No Longer Safe

Dear Source:

When is Public Works going to take action to repair/resurface Mahogany Road (Rte. 76)? These repairs are long, long overdue!
Over the past ten or more years, Mahogany Road has deteriorated to the point that it is no longer safe for even experienced drivers, much less the large numbers of tourists who travel it to see the "rain forest." The potholes are so numerous and so deep that drivers habitually drive on whatever part of the road they think will avoid them, resulting in collisions, near-misses and other mishaps. Several months ago I was struck head-on by a driver doing just that – driving on my side of the road to avoid the potholes on her side of the road. Fortunately, neither of us was injured, though the total damage to the two vehicles was in the thousands of dollars. This was not an isolated incident, by any means. I’ve had scores of near-misses, some involving huge gravel trucks, safari vans, taxi buses and automobiles, even school buses. I am not alone; ask almost anyone and you will hear similar frightening stories. By all means ask the school bus drivers how safe they feel driving their fragile young charges up and down Mahogany Road. Inquire of the tour bus drivers how many times they have had to take sudden evasive action to avoid a tragedy. I’m sure you’ll find the answers quite revealing.
This road is touted as a scenic drive, the route to the rainforest, and is the only "surfaced" road in the vicinity providing a route across the island from east to west. It is unfortunate that it is also the conduit for large numbers of heavily-laden (in some cases dangerously overloaded) trucks hauling rock and gravel from the quarries, as well as numerous cement trucks. Must we wait until one of these 50,000+ pound behemoths crashes into a van full of sightseeing tourists before the problem is addressed?
I don’t think there is another road on St. Croix that has been in such a sorry state for so long. Remember when the Triathlon used to run on Mahogany Road? Imagine that now; a chilling thought indeed, is it not?
Surely Public Works has the capability to at least fill the potholes and patch the missing asphalt on such an important road. It would be far better if they completely re-surfaced the entire road, but I understand that we are in too tight a financial situation to mount a project of that magnitude right now. However, the cost of patching and filling potholes is surely manageable when weighed against the certainty of hundreds of damaged suspensions, ruined tires and wheels, and the appalling likelihood of a very serious collision with multiple fatalities. Further delay is sheer folly!
Can this issue be addressed and a timetable for action offered? Only Governor deJongh and Public Works can answer that. But will they?
Most sincerely, Rich Waugh
Frederiksted, St. Croix

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Dear Source:

When is Public Works going to take action to repair/resurface Mahogany Road (Rte. 76)? These repairs are long, long overdue!
Over the past ten or more years, Mahogany Road has deteriorated to the point that it is no longer safe for even experienced drivers, much less the large numbers of tourists who travel it to see the "rain forest." The potholes are so numerous and so deep that drivers habitually drive on whatever part of the road they think will avoid them, resulting in collisions, near-misses and other mishaps. Several months ago I was struck head-on by a driver doing just that - driving on my side of the road to avoid the potholes on her side of the road. Fortunately, neither of us was injured, though the total damage to the two vehicles was in the thousands of dollars. This was not an isolated incident, by any means. I've had scores of near-misses, some involving huge gravel trucks, safari vans, taxi buses and automobiles, even school buses. I am not alone; ask almost anyone and you will hear similar frightening stories. By all means ask the school bus drivers how safe they feel driving their fragile young charges up and down Mahogany Road. Inquire of the tour bus drivers how many times they have had to take sudden evasive action to avoid a tragedy. I'm sure you'll find the answers quite revealing.
This road is touted as a scenic drive, the route to the rainforest, and is the only "surfaced" road in the vicinity providing a route across the island from east to west. It is unfortunate that it is also the conduit for large numbers of heavily-laden (in some cases dangerously overloaded) trucks hauling rock and gravel from the quarries, as well as numerous cement trucks. Must we wait until one of these 50,000+ pound behemoths crashes into a van full of sightseeing tourists before the problem is addressed?
I don't think there is another road on St. Croix that has been in such a sorry state for so long. Remember when the Triathlon used to run on Mahogany Road? Imagine that now; a chilling thought indeed, is it not?
Surely Public Works has the capability to at least fill the potholes and patch the missing asphalt on such an important road. It would be far better if they completely re-surfaced the entire road, but I understand that we are in too tight a financial situation to mount a project of that magnitude right now. However, the cost of patching and filling potholes is surely manageable when weighed against the certainty of hundreds of damaged suspensions, ruined tires and wheels, and the appalling likelihood of a very serious collision with multiple fatalities. Further delay is sheer folly!
Can this issue be addressed and a timetable for action offered? Only Governor deJongh and Public Works can answer that. But will they?
Most sincerely, Rich Waugh
Frederiksted, St. Croix