COVID-19 testing creating traffic tie-ups across the state

Posted at 7:01 PM, Nov 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-16 20:01:31-05

COLUMBIA, Tenn. (WTVF) — On the heels of the largest-ever single-day increase in COVID-19 cases across Tennessee, testing sites around the state are seeing lines so long, they’re having to call in police officers to help with traffic control.

For one example, health officials in Maury County say at the busiest times at their drive-thru testing site, cars actually will back up onto the highway, something health officials say they’ve had to call the police to help with.

They say the worst times for traffic backups are right before they open for the day, and before they open after lunch. At other times at the facility, there are no traffic issues.

Columbia’s mayor says while more people being tested is a good thing, the state needs to take further action steps.

"We want people to be tested, that is part of helping us stop the spread," said Columbia Mayor Chaz Molder. "So now, it is incumbent upon us in elected office to do more, that could mean issuing a mask mandate because we can stop the spread."

The state says traffic issues aren’t just happening in Maury County - law enforcement is cooperating with health departments across the state to address traffic issues as they come up.