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Transportation Secretary Pledges Possible Traffic Light or Other Fixes at Dangerous US 1 Intersection

| February 10, 2017

old dixie highway

The state Transportation Department painted the two arrows for turning lanes and repaired a sign in the median today at the intersection of U.S. 1 and Old Dixie Highway. (© FlaglerLive)

The Florida Department of Transportation today did a little repair and cosmetic work at the deadly intersection of U.S. 1 and Old Dixie Highway, scene of more than 200 crashes in the past three years. But more is on the way.

Today’s work does not substantially alter the intersection, where five people were killed in a three-vehicle wreck last Sunday (Feb. 5), bringing the total fatalities to seven at that intersection since May 2015. Nor is the work altering Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly’s request to the state for a permanent traffic light at that intersection, though Staly said today the state may be conducting a traffic-count study in that area soon. But Staly’s letter appears to have led the department to give the intersection a more serious look than it did in December.

Today the transportation department did little more than paint a right-hand arrow and a left-hand arrow at the westbound approach to U.S. 1 from Old Dixie Highway, and redress and repair a one-way sign in the middle of the intersection, at the edge of the median. It added a reflecting sign at the edge of the median, visible from the south approach on U.S. 1.

The painted lanes were among the four recommendations in an engineer’s safety study of the intersection. The study was completed last December and called for additional cosmetic changes, but nothing substantial: refurbishing a stop sign, and replacing an acceleration lane on U.S. 1 northbound, along the White Eagle property, with a grassy shoulder.

Rachel Cone, interim transportation department secretary, on Thursday wrote Staly, in response to his letter, that the department was “taking both immediate and long term action to make this intersection safer.” The secretary referred to today’s work, giving drivers, through the delineators, “physical points of reference to better assess the speeds of northbound traffic.” (No such delineators were visible today on Old Dixie.)

“In addition to these immediate actions,” the secretary wrote, “FDOT will be gathering traffic data and information at the intersection, which we will use to develop design concepts for a long term solution.” The secretary said the option of a traffic light “will be given full consideration as part of our process and will be evaluated along with other concepts including rumble strips, speed limit reductions and a potential roundabout.”

Sheriff’s data indicates that the intersection and its surroundings have been the scene of 207 crashes in the past three years, 148 of them resulting in injuries.

The Flagler County Commission later this month is likely to pass a resolution supporting the sheriff’s request for a traffic light at the intersection, Staly said. The transportation department has jurisdiction over US 1. It’s not clear why the possibilities Cone is referring to in her letter this week were not considered among any of the recommendations in the transportation department’s report in December. Steve Olson, the DOT spokesman for this region, did not return a call on the matter earlier this week, but forwarded the secretary’s letter today.

“We will let this letter, we sent to the Sheriff today, speak for itself,” Olson said.

Transportation Secretary Rachel Cone’s Letter to Rick Staly, Pleding Further Improvements

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11 Responses for “Transportation Secretary Pledges Possible Traffic Light or Other Fixes at Dangerous US 1 Intersection”

  1. RickG says:

    A roundabout???? At that intersection??? I think that FDOT needs some new contractors.

  2. The Oracle says:

    200 crashes in the last 3 years, and numerous fatalities. Florida DOT has a great idea, let’s do a STUDY. I have a better idea, get off your ASS, and install a traffic light NOW. Thank you.

  3. Jose Caniusi says:

    those two stop signs about 30 feet apart don’t help.

  4. Outsider says:

    I agree; drivers can’t even negotiate a stop sign, so how the heck are they going to deal with a roundabout?

  5. Carol Fisher says:

    Let us know when they will be doing the traffic study! We can encourage our locals to drive through there whenever possible! Maybe the increased traffic will make a point which the SEVEN fatalities in 20 months hasn’t made.

  6. woody says:

    Speeding is not the problem {no speeding cited in this last accident] Incomptent drivers are at fault.No big hoopla when a motorcyclist was killed a couple of months ago.Same story car pulls out with paying attention.

  7. William Curry says:

    Why can’t we just teach people to drive instead of yet another traffic light? Sooner than later another fatality will occur with a driver running the light, next will come the cameras and all the securocrats will sing with joy as the revenue pours in!

  8. Old Lady says:

    If people would pay attention to their driving and look where they are going, hopefully they won’t kill others or themselves.

  9. Steven Wood says:

    Well bike week is 30 days away so then we will see. It’s going to take someone in power to lose a family member then we will see how fast a light is put up. We as common people will be the ones to suffer this complete disregard for human life. RIP just to get ahead.

  10. Ann A says:

    I am very thankful and appreciative that they are looking into the situation.
    A Traffic light would save lives. Even a good driver finds it difficult to navigate that turn especially at night.

  11. Anonymous says:

    US 1 is poorly designed thru Flagler County!

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