Opinions: A Paige from her book: Stuck in a standstill

Sitting in a sweltering car, watching the buses inch out of the parking lot is the worst way to start a Friday. Every day I am forced to fight the usual parking lot traffic. My last hour of the day is in the upstairs math hallway, and it is virtually impossible for me to “beat the buses.”

I know it is only 15 minutes of my day, but the conditions create a toxic chemical reaction of teeanage impatience, lack of driving expereince and irrational road rage. It’s the perfect storm of stupid driving. Growing up in our our fast-paced society, I am predisposed to acting immediately. Even though I know the 15-minute simmer awaits me every day after school, I can’t flip the switch and turn my emotions off when I sit in the car.

I assumed last year the traffic would become less of an issue when the new parking lot was built, but I was completely mistaken. In the new parking lot, drivers cannot simply pull out into the drive; they are forced to loop around and come out by the main circle. Between the students coming out of the new parking lot and parents picking students up, it is impossible to pull out of the old lot.

Not only did the new lot make it more difficult for the students in the old lot to get out, it is even more difficult for students in the new lot. The traffic from parents trying to pick up students makes it difficult for those student drivers to loop around the parking lot and make it out before the busses because the busses get out quicker this year.

Now that the south drive is right turn only, the traffic has become even worse for student drivers. Last year two lines would form for right-hand and left-hand turns. One of the reasons the south drive became right-hand turn only was because the concern of this double line preventing traffic from turning into campus from 109, according to Mr. Dan Thoman, senior class principal.

Although space was tight, on many occasions I witnessed cars still able to pull into school even with the two lines. Since students could turn both ways it helped traffic move much more smoothly.

Another reason the south drive became right turn only was because it is dangerous to take a left turn onto busy Highway 109.

There have been several accidents due to people taking left turns on 109 over the past couple of years. The administration feared with more drivers leaving campus, there would be even more accidents.

However, the ratio of the amount of cars leaving the parking lot on a daily basis to the amount of accidents that have occured is so small that it is not a valid reason to ban all left turns onto 109. Overall, being able to make a left turn out of the drive made traffic lighter because students had more options on how to leave the parking lot.

The other major problem presented by the right turn only is that our parking lot is designed with one-way parking lanes. If students need to make a left turn on 109, but their row leads to the south drive, they either have to go the wrong way in their row, which can be extremely dangerous or make a right turn and turn around somewhere else. This design just makes unnecessary hassle for students and adds to the confusion in the parking lot.

The administration has no plan to correct this situation because it has not caused any serious problems.

Now, I will be forever stuck in the sauna that is my car awaiting my turn to pull out onto the north drive.