The first step in crash prevention …
By Becky Holland
MARSHALL -As yet another vehicle crash has occurred at the intersection of Loop 390 and U.S. 80 in Marshall, a question has been raised – ‘What can be done to prevent crashes from happening there?’
Loop 390 and U.S. 80 are both state-maintained roadways, according to Marcus Sandifer, public relationships representative for the Texas Department of Transportation. The city of Marshall is believed to be responsible for roadway up until an estimated 200 yards east on U.S. 80.
Sandifer told the Piney Woods News during a telephone interview Monday afternoon that TxDOT is responsible for maintaining those roadways, as well as farm-to-market roadways, and one of the ways they maintain is through monitoring what occurs. “We have a computer system where all the crash reports from the Texas Department of Public Safety, city police and sheriff’s departments, are filed. We receive information about crashes, fatalities, the causes of the incidents, etc … through this system so that we can determine if there are ways we can help prevent crashes,” Sandifer said. He also explained that contracts with city and county governing entities and TxDOT to play a key factor in these studies and decisions.
If a citizen or group of citizens feels that an area needs some sort of traffic safety equipment, or additional traffic equipment for crash prevention, it is recommended to contact elected governing officials for the area, i.e. city or county officials.
An elected official from the city or county where said roadway is can notify TxDot and ask for a traffic study to be done. “During the traffic study, we look at all traffic patterns and incidents on the state roadway, and determine what can be done,” he said.
Some of the solutions that TxDot uses for crash prevention include traffic lights, flashing lights, specific signage or rumble strips to “notify drivers of the approaching intersection or junction,” Sandifer said.
For more information about highways, interstate and other state-maintained roadways, visit http://www.txdot.gov.