Traffic Stalls Commute

SC Contributing Writer

According to East Stroudsburg University students, Erin Whapham, Marisa Pagan, and Steven Natiello, Interstate 80—a frequent route for many commuters traveling to and from school—is filled with unnecessary dangers that cause accidents and delays that negatively affect students on their way to class.

Whapham, Pagan, and Natiello take Interstate 80 to reach the school and think that the highway is generally the most effective way to reach the campus in a timely manner—granted no work traffic, construction, or accidents with resulting delays have occurred.

When accidents do occur on Interstate 80, roads are often closed off, traffic may come to a total standstill, and drivers may be forced to detour before reaching their final destination. Detours and delays like these can cause school commuters to be late or even absent from class—a difficulty that students living on campus likely won’t experience.

The three commuters share the opinion that the reason behind the many accidents on Interstate 80 may be due to the dangerous driving conditions.

Grad student, Natiello, states that the frequent text alerts he receives on his phone about “downed tractor trailers” are often the result of erratic drivers.

Tailgating, switching lanes without a turn signal, driving over the speed limit, and rubbernecking are often the cause of the numerous accidents that seem to be more and more frequent on Interstate 80.

Since August 26, 2013, when the new semester began for the students of East Stroudsburg University, three major highway accidents have occurred in the area, giving commuter students a bad feeling about the remainder of the school year.

“It’s terrible,” grad student, Erin Whapham reports when asked to describe the traffic situation on Interstate 80.

A similar response to the situation was given by ESU junior, Marisa Pagan, who leaves her home an extra hour early to avoid traffic on I-80 East when commuting to school in the morning and fights highway delays on I-80 West on the way home from the university in the evening. “It’s really irritating when I need to get home to do my homework and there’s traffic.”

In hopes of avoiding Interstate 80 delays that could make them late for class, Whapham and Pagan are sometimes forced to resort to alternate routes other than the highway to reach the University.

Pagan shares that she will sometimes use Route 611 to get to the university, while Whapham states that she sometimes takes Route 191 or Sullivan Trail. Whapham also takes Route 611 from time to time, but testifies that 611 is, “usually packed too.”

Students admit that even by taking back-roads to school, the Interstate 80 traffic overflow, combined with the normal traffic stops and red lights, can sometimes make the travel to the University even longer than waiting in highway traffic.

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