CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A car seen driving in the pedestrian lane of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge is prompting conversations among local and state officials.
“I’m just trying, in my mind, to understand how in the world, one, a driver could end up on the bridge and also how they were able to maneuver so far along on the bridge,” said Charleston resident, Ben Buckles.
Buckles was finishing up his daily walk on the bridge when he said he saw police cars rush up East Bay Street Monday afternoon.
“To my surprise, later that afternoon, I come to find out there was actually a car that had made its way onto the pedestrian walkway, and I was just shocked by that. I could not imagine what the people on the bridge were experiencing seeing that happen,” Buckles told News 2.
According to the Charleston Police Department, an elderly couple from out of town was travelling on East Bay Street when they unintentionally entered the walkway. Once police located the vehicle, the next step was safely getting it off the bridge.
“As you can imagine, up there is pretty tight, especially for a vehicle. So, they were able to navigate around the diamonds and backing out was not an option,” said Sgt. Anthony Gibson, the Public Information Officer for the Charleston Police Department.
The car slowly drove to the other end of the bridge in Mount Pleasant.
Sgt. Gibson said the department is having conversations with the South Carolina Department of Transportation and the city’s Traffic and Transportation team to explore possible changes to prevent a repeat of this situation.
“The goal here is to, with any modifications that we are going to recommend, is going to be to allow the free flow of pedestrian and bicycle traffic, while restricting vehicular traffic from getting up there again,” Sgt. Gibson said. “But we also have to be balanced and be cognizant about emergency vehicle access.”
Police said the driver was issued a citation and no one was hurt.