New sign, police enforcement moves illegal U-Turns farther down the road

Reporter: Morgan Rynor
Published: Updated:
Sign advises no U-Turns. (Credit: WINK News)
Sign advises no U-Turns. (Credit: WINK News)

One by one, vehicles are making U-Turns at a Fort Myers intersection. While a recent electronic sign and having police crack down on the maneuvers has deterred some, drivers have found a way around it.

What led to the problem is the massive congestion on Summerlin, which can back up for blocks to make a left onto Colonial Blvd. during rush hour.

“Up on Summerlin, it’s two lanes to make a left to the bridge,” Hedy Medina said. “They make it like three lanes.”

It is to let vehicles go straight through the light instead of onto Somerset Dr. and make a U-Turn after U-Turn after U-Turn illegally. In late January, WINK News witnessed more than 100 drivers making these illegal U-Turns in an hour.

“That’s already clogged up because the bridge is there and everything,” Danielle Allen said. “Trying to get in and out of here that’s a difficult light as it is.”

Since our story aired and fed-up neighbors complained, Fort Myers Police took a bolder approach to spread the word. It installed an electronic sign, which reminds people not to make a U-Turn.

Lee County Traffic Operations Center said since the story, it has increased the “green time” on the left hand turn signal to get onto Colonial.

But some living in the community at the end of the road said the problem is only moving closer to them.

“Just recently they put up a large electronic sign to tell “No U-turns,” Medina said. “The cars go further down to make the U-turns.”

Police have recently issued traffic tickets to drivers, as they issued three citations earlier this month.

“As long as they are there I think it will help,” Allen said. “But if the patrol isn’t there, I don’t know what will happen. I’m sure some people will still try it.”

While neighbors are happy with the department’s increased presence, they said drivers also need to do what is right.

“For the hope that they stop making the U-Turn there and we could go straight through,” Medina said. “But, it seems like it will never happen.”

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