Town Council Wants Dangerous Curvy Road Straightened
In West Milford, New Jersey, town and state officials are at odds over whether a curvy stretch of road should be straightened, and who should pay for the construction. The New Jersey Department of Transportation approved a plan that included paving a two-mile length on Route 23 and removing one of several U-turns along the highway. The West Milford Town Council responded by unanimously defeating the resolution for the repairs because it did not include a plan to straighten a section of the highway containing reverse curves, or “S-curves.” The S-curves are known to be the site of many local car accidents.
Route 23 and Growth in West Milford
The stretch of road in question was once a two-lane highway. As the area expanded and the surrounding population grew, two lanes were added. As a four-lane highway planned around the original curves, cars were pushed toward the outer lanes in a pattern that seemed to increase accidents. In 2015, 10 percent of crashes in West Milford occurred near the entrance to the S-curves. Back in 2012, Transportation Department workers made changes to prevent accidents, including the installation of rumble strips and solid white lines to prevent lane changes located at the entrance of the S-curves. The town council feels that more work still needs to be done to protect drivers and passengers.
Town and State Approaches to Improving Route 23
West Milford mayor Bettina Bieri wants improvements for Route 23, but feels the state plan is not enough to improve driver safety in that area. The state Department of Transportation needs the council to approve a resolution in support of the project before they can proceed. After rejecting the submitted proposal, council members say they requested other options that still include straightening the S-curves, but have yet to hear back.
Council members say the state refused the request to straighten the dangerous portion of the highway because of the cost involved. The state cites the proximity of the curved highway to public water supply and a preserved watershed area as the main reasons why the project would be cost-prohibitive. The West Milford Town Council hopes the Department of Transportation will reconsider their plan for the projects before preliminary engineering begins. They call the state’s plan a “band-aid” rather than a solution.
New Brunswick Car Accident Lawyers at Harold J. Gerr Protect Victims Injured in Serious Car Accidents
Drivers, passengers, and pedestrians injured in car accidents caused by poorly maintained highways may have some legal recourse. The medical costs, loss of income, and emotional pain and suffering that come with serious illness or injury can be daunting. Our experienced New Brunswick car accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Harold J. Gerr will advise you on the best legal course of action based on your situation. Schedule a free initial consultation with us by calling 877-249-4600 or by contacting us online.