Two county roads spark safety concernsFebruary 5, 2019
By CANDY NEAL
Safety concerns about two county roads were discussed at the Dubois County Commissioners meeting Monday.
County Engineer Brent Wendholt told the commissioners about damage to St. Anthony Road West south of the road’s intersection with County Road 350 South. Somehow, part of the nearby hill and roadway slipped, Wendholt said. “There was a hole that is about a foot wide,” he said. “We put dirt into it and are trying to keep water out of it.”
The hill and road needs to be stabilized, but how to do so needs to be researched, Wendholt said. A consultant that can conduct geotech work will have to be hired, he said.
Wendholt did not know what caused the damage; that will also be looked into as well, he said.
“The road does not need to be closed,” Wendholt said. “But we will be keeping a close eye on it, to make sure it’s safe for traveling. With a lot of rain, it could go.”
The commissioners agreed the road needs to be fixed as soon as possible. “That is a heavily traveled road,” Commissioner Nick Hostetter noted. Commissioner Elmer Brames added that a waterline is located in the area, and that needs to be protected.
The commissioners told Wendholt to contact a consultant for the needed geotech work.
The other road discussed was Schnellville Road. Hostetter said a resident asked if the road could be widened. The road runs from State Road 162 just south of Jasper to State Road 64 just west of Birdseye. The resident was concerned because of the amount of traffic that uses the road, especially semi tractor trailers
Wendholt wasn’t sure how much right of way the county owned along the road. “But it would be a good idea to do that,” he said. “The road is one or our busiest roads, by far.”
Hostetter added that people drive too fast on the road, which is also a problem. The commissioners plan to tell the sheriff’s department about their concern of speeding. Wendholt said he would check on the road’s right of way.
Brames said a resident also contacted him about Schnellville Road. The concern was about drivers on the road who attempt to turn at the road’s intersection with St. Anthony Road North/County Road 330 East. The problem is the hill near the intersection. Drivers can’t see the intersection until they’re over the hill.
“If someone is coming east and turning left, that person is a sitting duck,” Brames said.
The resident suggested making a left turn lane at the intersection. Hostetter wondered if there could be a flashing signal to indicate that someone is sitting at the intersection. He asked Wendholt if there could be one like the ones at the intersection of Schnellville and Santine roads.
Wendholt said he will see if there is such a light to indicate a still vehicle is at the intersection. The lights at Schnellville and Santine roads light up when vehicles are moving through the intersection, he said.
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