Traffic lights at dangerous Faunsdale intersection concern residents

Traffic lights at dangerous Faunsdale intersection concern residents
The issue is there’ve been numerous wrecks and fatalities at state Highways 25 and 80. (Source: WSFA 12 News)
The issue is there’ve been numerous wrecks and fatalities (Source: WSFA 12 News)
The issue is there’ve been numerous wrecks and fatalities (Source: WSFA 12 News)
Residents say the odd thing is these wrecks have occurred in broad daylight, not at night. (Source: WSFA 12 News)
Residents say the odd thing is these wrecks have occurred in broad daylight, not at night. (Source: WSFA 12 News)

UNIONTOWN, AL (WSFA) - More than two dozen residents in Faunsdale in Marengo County shared stories of near-misses and fatalities at a nearby intersection, and they're hoping the Alabama Department of Transportation will do something big, and soon, to prevent any more deaths.

The intersection of state highways 25 and 80 looks like any other rural part of west Alabama; speedy trucks, flashing red lights and enough signs it seems to tell the driver what to do and when.

But therein lies the irony of it all with those who live here. They say all the markings are confusing and they point to fie fatalities in the last five years.

"This is a very serious thing we're trying to do here," said Faunsale Mayor George Kelley.

They shared their stories with ALDOT officials Wednesday at the Faunsdale Volunteer Fire Department.

"And I put the blame on DOT," farmer Jimmy Woodfin said pointedly.

Others were a bit more diplomatic, suggesting traffic lights would be a tremendous help.

"That's why I said a red light," said one resident.

"No. They just blow through the stop sign," said Volunteer Firefighter Allen Ballard.

ALDOT representative Brian Aaron sympathized with what he heard but said putting up signals or constructing an overpass is not that simple. Consider this; $150,000 for signals, $7 million or so for an overpass.

"In the short term, we're committed at looking at several things signage; plans, speed limits," Aaron said.

In the end, Aaron and company recognized there is a problem which was big for those who want something done.

"No, I was very satisfied. We learned some things we didn't know before," said Mayor Kelley.

A study is underway now to determine what the solution just might be.

Aaron said that study will take about 8 months. In the meantime,  the locals and first responders hope they won't have another tragic story to tell.

The most recent fatalities occurred three weeks ago Wednesday night when an elderly couple apparently failed to yield and was struck by an 18-wheeler.

One immediate change could help; ALDOT is erecting street lights with the hope it will light up the area a little better. The light poles are literally on the ground waiting to be erected near Highway 80.

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