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Long Wait for Drivers Exiting the Mass Pike in West Springfield

Traffic Back Up on PikeSPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — A number of drivers today and into this evening were stuck in traffic on the Massachusetts Turnpike going westbound as they waited to get off at Exit 4.

ABC40 started receiving calls just before 5:00 p.m. about the traffic back-up at the West Springfield/I-91 South exit and when 8:00 p.m. came around we we’re still getting reports from drivers about it.

The Westfield State Police barracks on the Mass Pike told us it was caused by all the weekend traffic and that they were seeing the same thing in Sturbridge as well.   When we asked police if it had anything to do with the newly re-instated tolls, we were told that might have something to do with it, but that mainly it was because of the weekend.

However, it appears to have been a combination of the two as multiple drivers told us they waited because of the tolls.  Some even reported an hour long wait to exit and one person told us it took them 20 minutes to go one mile.

EZpass customers weren’t able to get through easily either because the pay lanes were so full and they couldn’t get by.




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  • Skiierguy1

    This exit is ALWAYS like that…and it’s only getting worse. Both the Springfield (6) and West Springfield (4) exits need to be expanded. Also, the lane configurations at the West Springfield exit (4) are poorly designed requiring non-EZ Pass vehicles to cross lanes with EZ Pass vehicles. Maybe our new toll revenues will pay for THAT? (Yeah, right!)

  • Doc

    This is a manufactured problem. The DOT (Read: Deval Patrick) wants to put in a very expensive system that tracks and bills your plate or ez pass, monthly through the mail(A system that loses 30 % of tolls and has forced other states to triple tolls). The 7 hour long backup in West Springfield today could have been handled with 3 mixed mode lanes and 1 dedicated EZ pass lane. The DOT’s answer to the reality of 80% of cars now having to stop and pay was to do nothing- see what happens; neglect staffing and piss you off so the more expensive option (a Raytheon system- Big Patrick donors) looks better to you. The current plaza setup would have worked today if, like all other EZ Pass states, they would use the mixed mode lanes they eliminated 2 years ago, “to save money”. This is reminiscent of the DOT lowering minimum staffing and banning overtime on Easter Sunday a few years ago, causing an 8 hour 55 mile backup, which resulted with the Chairman resigning when the news discovered it. The current system, between New York and I-95 in the Boston area, even after reinstating the western tolls, operates on toll rates that are equal to the rate they were in (believe it or not) 1989. Be rest assured the new system that future candidate for President Patrick wants most certainly will not. “Getting tough” on descent wage jobs plays well in the sticks and to the corporate donors though. Listen, if they stopped fucking with you and staffed the place it would work fine and continue to provide many good in-state local tax producing jobs to people who spend their money in Massachusetts. The toll reinstatement is not unreasonable, 10 cents, a quarter for most (commuters from Lee should get a break like in Boston). Being fucked with over politics and having to sit in a fake backup is infuriating. Call your reps people.

    • HonestABElincoln

      You’re right, it IS manufactured, because some toll taking idiot with the IQ of a grapefruit didn’t wave cars thru as they are supposed to do when dangerous backups occur. Someone should be held accountable. If anyone knows of any accidents or damage that happened because of this, demand reimbursement from the PIKE. They created this hazard by not following their own policys, and instead let greed rule.

      • alpinequeen

        “…some toll taking idiot with the IQ of a grapefruit didn’t wave cars thru as they are supposed to do when dangerous backups occur…someone should be held accountable…”

        You have so much pain to always put others down. Please seek help.

      • Needs2know

        Doc, you really shouldn’t comment and criticize about things you’ve only heard about and really have no knowledge of. You make yourself look like the one with the IQ of a grapefruit. Do you really think the toll collector has the authority to wave traffic through whenever they feel like it? It’s better to keep your mouth shut and look like a grapefruit rather than open your mouth and prove it.

        • Needs2know

          Sorry Doc, I agree with what you said, my rant should have been directed to HonestAbelincoln. Please accept my apologies.

  • HonestABElincoln

    Someone needs to call the Governors office and inform them to instruct the Mass pike collectors to obey their own laws. They have a policy that if cars back up past the exit ramp they are supposed to stop collecting tols, and wave cars thru until it is safe. Why did this not happen? Who didn’t do their job? This really needs to be looked into, because creating a dangerous situation like that makes Mass Pike responsible for deaths or damages from accidents. Lets make those calls, write those letters. This kind of situation is NEVER supposed to happen, and the Pike has a policy in place to prevent this. Ch 40 should look into who let this occur.

    • alpinequeen

      Another rant about nothing as usual. Give it a chance, things will settle down.

  • Doc

    The Pike stopped waving tolls over 10 years ago. Too expensive. Though a half assed solution, it’s better than what the higher ups are doing now, which is nothing. Staff the place properly and the traffic jams will be only in Boston. Incidentally all of the Boston highways back up every rush hour- toll road or not. Flyover tolls will make little difference than staffing the place will. It’ll just cost a lot more and make it easier to toll all the other highways. The current system works if run correctly, and on 1989 toll rates. Be careful what you wish for.

  • doggone

    The pike was supposed to be toll free after the tolls paid for it’s construction, but it was found to be a cash cow and created jobs for a few politically connected individuals. … All at the taxpayers expense !!

  • Doc

    Yes the Pike creates hundreds of jobs. Like there’s tons of jobs out there.

  • Needs2know

    I have an EZPass and don’t use it. I have been getting on in Chicopee and off in Ludlow for over 20 years. When it wasn’t broke they shouldn’t have tried to fix it. The EZPass lane is backed up on the ramp in Ludlow while there is very little traffic in the other 2 lanes. I think it was poor planning all around. There is a traffic light at the end of the ramp.

    We can’t expect something for nothing. Have you not noticed the road isn’t even plowed or maintained the way it used to be? Perhaps now that the money stays in Western Mass they can at least plow and cut the grass like they used to in the past.