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July 30, 2019 · OPINION

Old Tavern intersection needs action immediately

File Photo/Lawrence Emerson
Vehicles turn onto Route 245 from northbound Route 17 at Old Tavern.
By Ben Merchant

Sadly, I came upon yet another mass pileup accident at Routes 245 and 17 at Old Tavern on Saturday.

Cars were strewn across the northbound Route 17 lanes, upside down and in ditches. Numerous emergency rescue vehicles, state police and sheriff’s deputies were working the scene. I am praying there were no fatalities, but it looked very grim.

This is an all too common event; it has been happening for years, and immediate action needs to be taken. Whether it be a traffic light, rumble strips, reduced speed upon approach . . . something.

I have lived here for 48 years, and must have gone through the intersection thousands of times. I still have trouble negotiating speed of traffic coming from south from Marshall and north from Warrenton. I can only imagine less experienced drivers or out-of-town people trying to get through that intersection.

On a recent Friday night, I counted 45 cars deep trying to turn left as they presumably have come off Interstate 66 or from points north driving towards Warrenton.

How many more crashes or fatalities are needed at this intersection before our elected leaders take action?

I highly encourage our local and state officials to do something immediately to remediate this longstanding public safety issue that exists at Routes 17 and 245.
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HarisMoore · August 31, 2019 at 7:54 am
This intersection is a matter of high importance to avoid any casualties. I hope the authorities take action immediately. I think they should make a 3d model of the intersection see for themselves the seriousness of the matter. Check out the post right here
Linda Ward · August 23, 2019 at 6:15 pm
A driver must be on high alert when crossing at this intersection, there is no doubt, and some kind of flashing light would be a great starting point.
Jim Griffin · July 30, 2019 at 9:49 pm
Facebook Jamie Barry: Delaplane 17 is one lane each direction with strictly enforced 45 in a historic district. The section of 17 you want lowered to a matching 45 mph limit is four-lane highway divided by a grassy median -- not a realistic candidate for a 45 mph speed limit, not a typical community road -- unless there are community roads that serve as semi-trailer thoroughfares 24-hours-a-day.

The intersection in question could use a traffic-controlled stop light that perhaps flashes yellow outside business hours and goes red/green other times of day.
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