Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Law enforcement keeps peace after bridge closure

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PORT ALLEN - West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Deputies are paying extra close attention to the Intracoastal Canal bridge now that the Sunshine Bridge near Donaldsonville has been closed for repairs.

"We're guessing there's additional 10,000 to 15,000 vehicles being pumped through this artery," said Deputy Ken Albarez.

Traffic backs up for miles during rush hour on the Intracoastal Canal Bridge. The structure has long been inadequate to accommodate the heavy demand from plant workers and tractor-trailers heading to and from the I-10 bridge across the Mississippi River.

Deputies have regularly enforced a no-cutting policy at the base of the bridge where impatient drivers often illegally cross a double-white dividing line cutting off dozens of others who patiently wait.

"Because of the close proximity of the two bridges we want to keep traffic flowing," said Albarez.

It's a similar situation in Iberville Parish at the Plaquemine Ferry crossings where demand has also increased since the Sunshine Bridge closed last week. Iberville Parish Sheriff's Deputies continue to enforce their own no-cutting policy at the front of a very long line of traffic.

"When they cut in front of all those people, tempers flare," said Iberville Parish Sheriff Brett Stassi.

Deputies are being extra vigilant at the crossings to keep the peace.


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