Aug 18, 2010 Ned Campbell Uncategorized
The Onondaga County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a fatal car crash Wednesday Aug. 11 that claimed the lives of Ronald Mabb, 68, and his passenger Marlene Demay, 67, both of Elbridge.
The crash took place at around 1:55 p.m. in front of the Dollar General located at 1160 Route 5 in Elbridge when Kevin Lamay II, 26, of Rome drove a tractor trailer into the back of the 2009 Kia being driven by Mabb, causing it to burst into flames.
The car crash, the third accident to occur in a span of two hours, has caused residents to ask, how safe is the stretch of Route 5 that runs through Elbridge?
Town Supervisor Ken Bush has fielded questions of this nature before.
A few years ago, following a fatal car accident in Elbridge, Bush made multiple requests to the New York State Department of Transportation. The NYSDOT investigated the highway and granted two of the town’s requests, implementing a reduced speed limit as well as painting double-striped “do not pass” lines on Route 5. The DOT denied the town’s request to have a traffic light installed at the intersection of Sandbank Road and Route 5.
That intersection was the location of the second accident of the day on Aug. 11. Ronald Mabb’s car was sitting in traffic slowed by the accident, heading west, when he was struck from behind.
“What happens sometimes is that we ask for things and we don’t always get totally what we want,” Bush said. He noted that the DOT has been responsive to the town’s requests over the years.
“I’m not a traffic engineer. I serve as a sounding board for people that live in the area and drive in the area and I offer suggestions of what should be done,” he said. “I’m more than willing to go to bat for them and present their concerns and suggestions to the state.”
In June, Bush wrote in to the state again, thanking the department for the changes made but also pushing harder than ever for an installation of a traffic light at Sandbank and Route 5.
“I don’t know how many statistics it takes before you start to make some serious changes to the road,” Bush recalled saying in the letter.
According to Gene Cilento, NYSDOT public information office for Region 3, the department is now considering putting a three-light signal at the intersection of Sandbank Road and Route 5. As part of the consideration process, the DOT has scheduled turning counts at the intersection and traffic counts on Route 5 to be completed by November.