Last minute shoppers jam roads on Christmas Eve

D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) - By Trang Pham-Bui – bio | email

D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) – The weather outside felt delightful Friday, just perfect for shopping. But the holiday traffic at a busy D'Iberville intersection can be frightful. On Thursday, they had to work five accidents around the Promenade shopping complex.

"Extremely busy. Yesterday was very challenging for us. We had an unusual amount of accidents we believe in a short period of time, which caused some traffic congestion in the Promenade complex itself," said Capt. Keith Davis with the D'Iberville Police Department.

Christmas Eve traffic picked up around noon, as shoppers rushed to the stores around the Promenade and Sangani Boulevard.  D'Iberville police posted six officers in the area to help monitor traffic.

"Once that traffic plan goes into place, traffic is redirected in all directions to get people out of both exits as quickly as possible," said Davis.

Officers had to override the traffic lights at times to relieve some of the congestion. And the bike unit patrolled the parking lots and kept watch over the traffic flow.

"We have officers on bike patrol today and I'm sure they're enjoying this beautiful weather. We have officers on foot that's walking the Promenade.  We're also utilizing our motor unit today," said Davis.

D'Iberville police put that traffic plan to work on Black Friday. They reactivated the plan to handle another influx of last-minute shoppers.

"Tomorrow, we're going to take a little break and let the guys rest a bit and prepare for Sunday. We anticipate a high volume of traffic on Sunday," said Davis.

That's when shoppers head back to the stores for after-Christmas bargains and for returns and exchanges.

Shoppers can expect some traffic relief around that busy intersection. Sangani Boulevard will be widened to five lanes. Work is expected to begin early next year.

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