Several accidents happened on SR 256 -, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Several accidents happened on SR 256

July 30, 2006

Sylvester -- An accident-prone road in Sylvester continues to raise concerns among many residents. There were 16 documented accidents on State Route 256 into town, this year alone. While none of those were fatal, some people have lost their lives on that road in the past.

The accidents you mentioned all happened within a one-mile stretch of State Route 256. The road is also known as Martin Luther King Junior Drive. Thirty-nine accidents have happened on that stretch of highway within the past five years, two of them fatal.

It's prompted citizens to make a change.

Maggie Gardner gathered this list of more than 200-signatures. They are her neighbors, friends and fellow concerned citizens in Sylvester.

"We're hoping that when they get this petition, they'll do something hopefully," said Maggie Gardner.

That something Gardner wants done is to make State Route 256 safer for drivers. She was involved in the latest crash on the road and wants something done so it won't happen to anyone else.

 The problem area starts right here at this intersection along State Route 256, and it continues about one-mile back toward town. Drivers complain of poor visibility. In fact there have already been 16 accidents along this stretch of highway, this year alone.

When community leaders heard the concerns, action was underway. Councilman Larry Johnson compiled accidents reports, and is now asking the Department of Transportation to help.

"With the petition with Ms. Gardner's courage to get it up, maybe we can do something as a county as a city and as a state," said Councilman Larry Johnson.

It's something County Commissioner Tony Hall agrees with because increased traffic and growth in the county.

"We really need to get some sort of caution light up here to warn the motorists that there is a dangerous intersection coming up," said Commissioner Tony Hall.

"It is hard to see the traffic coming from your right, and that is a concern."

Maggie Gardner's accident happened because it was too hard for her to see oncoming traffic over a hill.

"That's why we have this petition going, because we feel that we're in danger. Even the school children, even anybody," said Maggie Gardner.

The petition is a small step by one concerned citizen to make the the road safer for everyone.

Some possible solutions the county commissioner and city councilman suggested include lowering the speed limit, and adding some caution lights.

City Councilman Larry Johnson says he has sent letters to the DOT to make them aware of the problem.