Road rage: Long lines at Nova Scotia and New Brunswick borders cause new frustrations
It’s been nearly a week since Nova Scotia opened up to New Brunswickers, but even with loosened restrictions, some travellers found themselves frustrated with the long lines this weekend.
Depending on the day of the week, travellers driving through to Nova Scotia may pass through the border within minutes, while others have complained of long lines that stretch over several kilometres.
"Currently there's still just one lane so they can scrutinize virtually every car that comes in,” says David Kogon, the mayor of Amherst.
"Now, they don't stop the Nova Scotia or the New Brunswick cars, they just wave them through, but it's creating delays."
Kogon believes the solution could be returning to two lanes of traffic to help speed up the process.
"The frustration continues, you saw the long line ups on Sunday afternoon," says Elizabeth Smith-McCrossin, an independent MLA in Nova Scotia.
"The traffic was backed up four to five kilometres into New Brunswick and when people got through, they were just waved through."
Smith-McCrossin doesn't believe there should be border checkpoints on the highway since COVID-19 cases have declined.
"New Brunswick took down their border officials a few weeks ago, so I guess I don’t understand what the point of having people set up on the Trans-Canada Highway when you enter the province if they're just being waved through," she says.
Border officials may ask Atlantic Canadians for their licenses, but no proof of vaccination. Those travelling from outside the Atlantic provinces have to complete a safe check-in form and may need to self-isolate, depending on if they’re vaccinated or not.
"They just stopped us, asked us for our identification, but it was pretty painless," says New Brunswick resident Stacie Smith, who passes through the border regularly for school.
"I thought it was a pretty quick process at the time"
Open borders mean more traffic passing through, but Sackville, N.B. Mayor Shawn Mesheau believes there are solutions to what may be a busy summer ahead for Maritimers.
"If you think there’s going to be a delay, pop into Sackville on the way by and we’ll be happy to host you for a little bit and enjoy shops and our places if you haven’t been," says Mesheau.