Traffic studies for Love Rd./McCurry Rd. intersection lead to improvements and conclusions
Traffic studies focused on the intersection of Love Rd. and McCurry Rd. have led to several safety improvements, but Carlos Molina, Winnebago County Engineer, says the County plans to add another one: "We will install 45 mph advisory speed signs (black on yellow) on McCurry Road as you approach the intersection from both directions."
For the Love/McCurry intersection, Molina told us Winnebago County has completed a speed study, a sight/stop sight distance analysis, traffic accident reports review and a multi-way (4-way) stop warrant study.
Molina says the engineering studies have led to some changes, such as:
- Flashing yellow warning lights on both McCurry Road approaches to the intersection
- Flashing red lights on the stop signs
- Reflective strips on the sign posts
The County also replaced one of the “cross traffic does not stop” panels on the stop sign on the south side.
But Molina said, "The speed study concluded that it does not warrant the reduction on the posted speed (these are the black on white signs)." Some residents wanted lower speed limits on McCurry Road, though some drivers ignore them. The studies also found there was adequate sight and stopping sight distance at this intersection.
Also, the volume of traffic was not high enough to warrant a multi-way stop intersection, such as a four-way stop. Drivers on McCurry Road, which is larger, are not required to stop.
But Molina did pinpoint a main problem: "The majority of the accidents happened after a vehicle on Love Road (north or southbound) stopped at the intersection and then proceeded without yielding to the other vehicle on McCurry Road."
In other words, the problem is not the relatively few drivers who ignore the stop sign on Love Road. "If that had been the case, rumble strips would be considered (not a popular measure with nearby residents because of the noise)." And most collisions are not caused by drivers on McCurry Road not seeing drivers on Love Road, but the other way around.
Darkness is not the issue either. The intersection has a street light and, as Molina points out, many intersections in rural areas are not illuminated.
Molina told us, "I ask for your help reminding drivers to slow down and pay attention."