Police cite Olhava sightseeing trips

POULSBO — Since its inception, the Olhava Development has generated excitement throughout the city and this past weekend it generated something else: traffic citations.

Eleven tickets were given in the Olhava area from 8 a.m. on June 11 to 5 p.m. on June 12. The exact nature of those citations was not released by the Poulsbo Police Department.

“It’s nothing out of the ordinary or unusual,” said Police Chief Jeff Doran. “The road is closed.”

With ongoing construction in the area, including retail giant Wal-Mart, there are a number of safety concerns with the site because of the large amount of heavy equipment being operated, Doran explained.

The Home Depot is also expected to begin construction in the near future, which will add to the amount of large equipment on the site, he noted.

“There are also some theft issues as well and for now the road is closed,” he said. “When it’s open, the public can drive through.”

However, Councilwoman Connie Lord, who is on the city’s law and justice committee, said the number of citations issued was amazing.

“No one indicated there was a problem and it had not been specifically brought to our attention,” Lord explained.

Normally, when the department is going to conduct an emphasis patrol, the committee is informed beforehand, she said.

“If someone’s not speeding, I think it would be more appropriate to give a warning instead of a ticket,” Lord stated. Tickets for going through the “road closed” sign are set at $101.

Many people are curious about the progress of the site due to all the attention Olhava has received in the past and merely want to see what’s going on, Lord explained.

“I hope the mayor will intervene and see if there is a solution to it,” she said, noting that the police department is under the supervision of the mayor.

Some possible solutions could include improved signs in the area outlining the results of going around the sign and more public notice about the consequences of driving through the site, Lord said.

Other areas in the city need more attention from law enforcement than the Olhava site, which is still under development, she noted.

“If they’re going to give tickets, maybe they should go to Torval Canyon and write speeding tickets there,” Lord said.

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