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Unexpected OMV closures frustrate Acadiana residents

Posted at 10:09 PM, Jul 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-06 23:09:49-04

He didn’t ask for much.

26-year old James Murphy of Lafayette only wanted two things: to have his driver’s license renewed and to register his vehicle.

He went to the Lafayette office of the OMV (Office of Motor Vehicles) only to be rerouted over to Breaux Bridge. While he’s not furious about the situation, Murphy does say that his ever-growing level of frustration could have been mitigated with a little bit more communication.

Problem is, at 10 a.m., the only communication Murphy received was a door sign with four words. “’Closed until further notice’,” says Murphy. “That was it.”

There was no notice of where he “could” go, although he knew enough to hope that another office, in other town, might be open and might be able to help.

Once he got to the Breaux Bridge OMV office, he received a number inside before having to go outside and having to wait. In Murphy’s case, that wait was close to two-and-a-half hours

“If I knew before I drove all the way over there (the Lafayette office) that I couldn’t get what I needed to have done, then I would have already planned to come here and I wouldn’t have wasted my time,” says Murphy.

Murphy tried calling the Lafayette office, but only heard the repeated ringing of the phone. Just a few more details from the OMV, he says, would have helped.

“They could just have a voice mail that says ‘Hey, we’re closed until further notice because it’s mandatory’ or ‘we’re cleaning’ or ‘we don’t want someone else to get it’, that would definitely be something people would understand I feel.”

There’s this note on the OMV website, which in part reads, because of positive testing of an OMV employee, the location in Lafayette is closed’. Some might say, ‘Why should I have to check a website to find out if a place like this is open?’

Unfortunately, under the current atmosphere-- under the current Covid-19 situation-- checking that kind of thing just might have to be standard operating procedure.

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