Fatal car crash raises traffic safety concerns in Elbridge

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."

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