TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (WSAV) – With thousands of visitors hitting the beach the past few weekends, Tybee Island city officials implemented traffic controls to help ease vehicle congestion. They say this is the first step in handling the influx of people and traffic on the island, especially on the weekends.
“The idea is to keep it clear, we’ve done this before on different weekends and it does work. We are satisfied with this system and it’s more of a smaller scale traffic control but we are confident it will keep things flowing on Butler Avenue,” says City Manager, Shawn Gillen.
On top of handling vehicle traffic, the city says its working to bringing on more law enforcement officers. But similar to businesses on the island, the police department is experiencing staffing issues.
“We’re gonna bring more personnel on board for Saturdays because that’s the busiest day of the week. We’ve got additional code enforcement officers and we’re offering overtime as well as bonus pay for police officers to come and work those shifts,” adds Gillen.
Tourists visiting say they’ve seen first hand how the island is struggling to keep up.
“As soon as about Thursday and Friday hit, the lines everywhere start getting crazy. I walked into the convenience store and asked the lady how she was doing and the first thing she said is that the people on Tybee are just tired,” explains Bradley Knotts, visitor of the island.
Gillen says he and the city are working hard to keep up ahead of the summer months, and until then, patience is appreciated. City officials say weather permitting, they plan to keep the traffic controls in place for the next few weekends.