Car Pool Pickup Woes at Marshpoint Elementary - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Car Pool Pickup Woes at Marshpoint Elementary

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It's anything but smooth sailing on Highway 80 near Marshpoint Elementary.

This year, the school changed the protocol for car pool pick up and now parents say their safety is on the line.

I was out at the school talking to concerned drivers and to see the gridlock for myself.

Last week, I talked to many parents who say traffic getting into the school is a real problem. Not only that---it's dangerous.

Most days, parents are lined up on the side of the highway waiting to get on to the school's property to pick up their children. But they say the new protocol for pickup is creating gridlock and could result in an accident. Now, they are hoping for a change.

"I'm just getting more and more frustrated."

Holly Miller has been picking her children up from Marshpoint Elementary months, but every day she says she takes a gamble with her safety.

"When the cars line up in the car pool line, they back up all the way back to Highway 80 to the Seagate subdivision. So if you are coming from the other direction, you have to turn around and do a u-turn. At the same time, there are a ton of cars going straight down Highway 80 or are trying to turn in to get into car pool, so it's kind of like a game of frogger."

At the beginning of the school year, parents were notified that they should not line up on school property for car pool before 3:20 P.M. So, many of them line up on Highway 80 instead.

"We are supposed to try to get as far over on the embankment as we can but some cars can't get over as far as others, some cars are bigger, and I'm having to roll my rear view mirrors in because cars are speeding past me so fast that I'm scared that I'm scarred I'm going to get hit."

Tracee Donaldson also says the traffic is a real problem, and she has a great view from where she sits and waits.

"This is my church family, and I sit here because the line is usually pretty dangerous."

But it hasn't always been this way, last year parents lined up on Wilmington Island Drive. For Miller, it is the right choice because it's a smaller road with less traffic.

"I was hoping that maybe you putting this on camera and shining light on the issue, we can move our carpool line back to the way it was. "

But school officials say that wasn't working. District spokesperson, Kurt Hetager says they have been working with Campus Police and Metro to come up with a solution.

"It was very clear not to back traffic up into the Whitemarsh area. One of the things that the school found is that if parents are not coming to the school to pick students up from dismissal prior to 3:20 P.M., you can elevate a lot of that back up."

But parents say school officials shouldn't be satisfied with this solution.

"We should all use common sense, that Highway 80 is a very traveled road. The side road is not. If we go back to the old way, there is less of a risk of someone having an accident and getting injured."

I reached out to Savannah Chatham Metro Police spokesperson, Julian Miller, who says traffic monitoring is up to campus police. It is possible for parents to receive a ticket for lining up before 3:20 on Highway 80, but I'm told that hasn't happened yet.

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