NORWAY – The Key Bank temperature readout said it was 104 degrees at 3 p.m.

About 20 cars were lined up on either side of the construction zone on the Lake Road.

Hot temperatures and traffic inconveniences can add up to road rage.

But not for the many of the travelers who had to stop for the Lake Road construction. The majority there between 2 and 3:30 p.m. stayed cool in their air-conditioned vehicles.

And the majority agreed that driving an air conditioned car was the only way to go in the summer and made construction stops more bearable.

Joy Moll from a town near Camden, N.J., pooh-poohed the notion that the wait on Lake Road even constituted a traffic delay.

“Traffic is a lot worse there,” she said.

Calvin Shelton, 52, of Norway called the delay a necessary evil if people wanted to keep the roads in shape.

Janice Whittemore, 80, of Bridgton said she realizes it’s necessary and she tries to stay cool.

“They can’t do it in the winter,” she said.

Alice Turner, 64, of Norway said she didn’t mind the wait at all as long as the roads improved.

“Although, if I didn’t have air conditioning I might feel a little different,” Turner said.

John Gerard, 37, of Waterford didn’t have air conditioning and he did feel different.

“It’s a pain,” he said of the construction. “I go through this every day, twice a day, back and forth to work.”

While the wait may be painful to some motorists, it certainly is no party for the flaggers working the site.

Raymond Holman, 39, of Mexico is the lead flagger for Star Security, which is in charge of controlling traffic. He said this is his third construction job he has worked on since the weather has warmed. He has been in the business for three years.

“This crowd here isn’t that bad,” said Holman. “On some sites we’re called all kinds of names and people say things they shouldn’t.”

He said a woman he figured to be in her 50s doused him with water on Wednesday as she drove by. He said it felt good, but at first it was a shock.

He said later that day someone gave him a couple of bottles of cold water and a driver of a Schwan’s (frozen food delivery) truck offered to stop so some of the road crew could put their heads in the back to cool off.

David Mitchell, 33, of Norway said sometimes people can be rowdy, and he has had bottles tossed at him.

“A couple of years ago in Falmouth people really gave us a tough time,” Mitchell said. “We were working by the country club and had to block the entrance sometimes.”

Holman said he has seen his share of abuse.

“We just smile and later we mumble and curse to ourselves on the way home,” Holman said.

Stacy Herrick, 37, of Norway offered the perspective shared by many that although stopping for construction was indeed a pain, it was overshadowed by the enjoyment of driving on new roads.

“I just wish they would do it at night,” she said.


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