Farrell: Automatic gates at Westbury repeatedly broken

Someone really wants to get into Westbury Park and the Estates at Westbury in Bluffton.

Over the past two months, the new automatic gates there — which replaced ones that were not in use for nearly a year — have been repeatedly damaged.

I say “someone” is doing this but, according to management, at least four someones have been identified thus far.

The gates at both entrances, however, have been broken more than just four times, residents say.

I went over to the neighborhood Friday and, sure enough, the entrance gate off U.S. 278 was bent backward, as if the driver who did it said “Hahaha. Nope,” and drove on through.

I am often a “Hahaha. Nope” person in life — the kind who disregards signs and rules that seem silly and ineffective — but never when it could cause damage to another person or their property … or, let’s face it, worse, me and my own.

So who are these people breaking the gates there? Are they too good for the gates?

Or are they too bad for entrance?

After a few false starts, the new gates at Westbury went live Nov. 30, and there were problems from the beginning, exacerbated by residents who didn’t make the effort to get their new cards registered and those who didn’t realize the Buck Island Road entrance is now just for residents and not their guests.

This initially caused backups onto the road.

And with that, came frustration.

People at Westbury have been piggybacking into the community, using the driver in front of them as the gate-opener. Even those with access devices are doing this because there’s a delay in the gate closing between cars, and it’s simply too much to bear.

Others have been driving into the development through the exit gate just to avoid the line at the entrance, a move that is ill-advised, especially because the gates are now being watched.

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