Improve safety at hot spots

Highway engineers and law enforcement officers should team up to address some of the most notoriously dangerous intersections in and around Trumbull County.

Two such intersections drew the ire of local residents this year.

On Feb. 9, a crash at the intersection of routes 322 and 534 in Windsor, in Ashtabula County just north of the Trumbull County line, resulted in 12 people being sent to local hospitals. One of the vehicles was a 15-passenger van, which went airborne and struck a house.

The news brought back unpleasant memories for Champion resident Leanne Turner, whose father was killed in an accident at that intersection. Turner is one of many people who have complained about how difficult it is to see oncoming traffic while at the stop signs.

Earlier in the month a Cortland man was flown by helicopter to a Cleveland hospital after a two-car accident at the corner of North Road and North River Road. Three people were injured in the two-vehicle crash that resulted in one of the vehicles hitting a telephone pole.

Nearby neighbors say they have complained to local officials that the intersection is dangerous, but no safety measures have been taken. Of particular concern is confusion over which lanes are designated for turning and which for proceeding straight.

Sometimes intersections are designed poorly. Sometimes traffic patterns change rendering obsolete an intersection’s original design. Either way, when complaints are lodged or accident frequency trends upward, the highway engineer and local police responsible for that intersection should collaborate more frequently and more effectively on a safety upgrade.