July 5, 2007
An intersection on Route 29 in Madison County has gotten the nickname "Deadly Shelby" within the past year.
Since 2006 there have been nearly a dozen accidents at the intersection of Route 29 and Route 662, Shelby Road, leaving eleven people injured and three dead.
This increase in deadly traffic has prompted officials in Madison community to reach out to VDOT for a solution to this problem.
Robin Shifflett has owned Shelby Automotive at the intersection for the past thirty years.
He says he sees an average of one accident a month and remembers when all three people lost their lives right in front of his store.
"Its extremely dangerous. The traffic is twice as much as it was ten years ago, and (now) we've got the transfer station down the road here, and it brings in a massive amount of traffic, so something has to be done," said Shifflett.
"The board has been monitoring this situation out here for several years and in the last year it looked like the rate of these accidents has increased," said James Arrington, the Vice-Chair of the Madison County Board of Supervisors.
Now VDOT is stepping in with a hopeful answer to the problem.
Lou Hatter, with VDOT said, "We're going to reduce the advisory speed for motorists driving through that intersection on Route 29 from 55mph to 50mph, and we are going to install rumble strips."
VDOT also plans on putting blinking yellow lights one thousand feet before the intersection; warning drivers on Route 29 of the possible danger up ahead.
"We are very very happy that we are finally getting something done about this situation and the community is ecstatic," said Arrington.
VDOT officials say both the rumble strips and the flashing lights should be in place on Route 29 within the next four to six weeks.