Police chief thinks outside-of-the-box to slow drivers down

Published: Mar. 21, 2018 at 10:13 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 22, 2018 at 5:55 PM CDT
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All of Southwest Louisiana is feeling the increase in traffic, but no one feels the pain more than the people of Sulphur.

With cars trying to find alternative routes, residential areas are becoming hazardous.

Sulphur Police Chief Lewis Coats has come up with a unique way to hopefully help.

"I believe I saw a painted bike in Lake Charles advertising a business, and I thought I could probably take that and twist it a little to put here in Sulphur and do something positive with traffic control," said Coats.

Coats has been trying to come up with different ways to handle traffic troubles. One of the main issues is people speeding through residential areas.

"Basically, motorists are maybe unfamiliar with the area, or maybe they are, they're just getting used to just traveling and maybe exceeding the 25 mph speed limit," said Coats. "I'm just trying to get them to think, hey watch your speed, this could be your kid on this bike."

The community is excited.

"We have gotten nothing but positive reviews because I think it's just so different," said Coats. "It's not just the speed sign and I think it's just making people think about the safety of the kids."

People who live in the area see what's going on in rush hour.

"They drive double the speed limit sometimes around here, especially, when they're trying to avoid the traffic right now on Maplewood," said one resident.

Although most residents think the signs are a great idea, there's been a little snag in Chief Coats plan.

"Somebody decided they needed the bike more than the police department or the city did, and they took it, so we're missing one," said Coats. "The good news is, citizens have come forward and I already have donations of three or four bikes. People want to sponsor and give me a bike so we're going to use those."

Encouraged by the community's response, Coats plans to re-design the signs a little more theft-proof and put them in neighborhoods around the city.

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