USGA respond to traffic concerns at Shinnecock Hills
Last Updated: 13/06/18 5:00pm
The USGA have responded after several players voiced their concerns over the traffic problems heading to the US Open at Shinnecock Hills this week.
Tiger Woods said that players could be at risk of missing their tee times due to the difficulties in travelling from New York to the course. He said on Tuesday: "There are a few guys so far this week have said it's taken them two-and-a-half to three hours from the hotel, so there's a good chance that someone might miss their time.
"You get a little traffic, you get maybe a little fender bender, it's not inconceivable someone could miss their time."
However, on Wednesday the USGA released a statement to say that plans have been put in place to improve the situation, saying: "In anticipation of continued heavy traffic on routes leading to Southampton and Shinnecock Hills Golf Club during the 5am-9am and 4pm to 8pm hours from now through Sunday, the Joint Police Operations team has made a series of adjustments to improve flow."
It continued: "The Joint Police Operations team is warning east-bound local workers, homeowners and those associated with the championship to expect significant delays, and to make every effort necessary to avoid travel during these times. Traffic during the morning hours within a 10-mile vicinity of Southampton can expect delays of up to two hours on main roads during peak periods and should adjust their planning times accordingly."
Rory McIlroy, who like Woods is staying close to the course, also voiced his concerns about the traffic problems in his press conference on Wednesday. He said: "I am three minutes door to door. I have no problem. I don't know if we were very smart or very lucky, one of the two. So we're fine.
"But I think anyone staying west of the golf course is going to get caught in that traffic, whether it's on the LIE or Montauk Highway. It's tough, it's a very thin piece of land, and people are trying to get out from the city. So we're pretty fortunate."
However, Mike Davis, the CEO of the USGA, insisted that there are no plans to not use Shinnecock Hills again in the future due to the growing traffic problems.
"There's a lot of focus on trying to improve on what's happening traffic-wise," said Davis. "But just because of what's happened the last couple days, the last thing we're going to do is give up on one of our truly treasured sites. We love this place."