Citizens' concerns could lead to new precautionary measures at intersection in Duffield

Nick Shepherd • Feb 5, 2017 at 8:30 PM

GATE CITY — New precautionary measures to warn drivers of an upcoming turn could be coming to the intersection of Route 58 and Route 625 in Duffield after the Virginia Department of Transportation presented options for the road during the monthly meeting of the Scott County Board of Supervisors.

Supervisor Chad Hood, representing the Sixth District, which encompasses Duffield, informed the board he had been contacted by some citizens who were concerned about the lack of a turning lane from Orby Cantrell Highway onto Angler’s Way.

Paul Pearson, one of those citizens, told the board about his concerns and gave supervisors a petition with approximately 200 signatures asking for action. He said last month he was attempting a turn and a truck swerved to miss him and nearly took out two vehicles at the intersection.

“Something needs to be done,” he told the board. “It just does.”

Hood contacted VDOT to ask what, if anything, could be done. Joseph Mullins from VDOT told the board that after his office was contacted, he did a study of the intersection. He expanded the study to include some other crossover locations near Route 625.

After reviewing crashes from 2013 to 2016, he found there was only one rear-end crash at the Route 625 crossover. At the Route 627 intersection, there were no rear-end collisions and two angle crashes. On Route 629 there were zero rear-end crashes and five angle crashes.

“In looking at this review in terms of relative safety, Angler’s Way is one of the safer crossovers compared to these other two,” he told the board.

Options on what to do to alleviate the concerns of residents in the area were discussed. Mullins told the board that adding a turning lane or closing the crossover would typically be the choices when there is a crossover with no turning lane.

He said adding a turning lane would be very expensive, running into the millions, and did not recommend it. Mullins said the relatively inexpensive option would be to install reflectors and some signage. He said he would not recommend closing the Angler’s Way crossover.

His ultimate recommendation was to do nothing. Hood asked if there was any way they could get some new signage in the area.

“I’ll be honest with you. I know the data is showing there are not a lot of crashes,” Hood told Mullins. “But I travel that road a lot, and I’ve never experienced a crash there. But I’ve seen many times when there were almost crashes.”

Mullins said he understood that concern.

Chairman David Redwine asked Mullins to put together some information about the possible costs of adding caution lights and signage before their next meeting. Mullins told the board he would do that and report back in March. 

In other business:

— The board approved changing the location of the Central Absentee Voter Election District from the courthouse to the county office.

— Lori Mellons updated the board on her efforts to save the Slant swinging bridge

— The board received an update about Mountain Empire Community College from Dr. Scott Hamilton for the final time, as Hamilton will be retiring soon.

— An update was given to supervisors about the Thomas Village Community Center

— The board waived building permit fees for Gate City United Methodist Church.

— Supervisor Darrel Jeter and Vice Chairman Danny Mann were selected to serve on the Budget Committee.

— Michael Kincaid was appointed to the Building Code Appeals Board, John Kilgore was appointed to the Crooked Road Board, Charles Bullock and Dennis Culbertson were appointed to the Planning Commission and County Administrator Freda Starnes was appointed to the Community Criminal Justice Board.

— The supervisors approved a supporting agreement with the Virginia Resources Authority and the Scott County Public Service Authority for the Big Moccasin Phase I water line extension project.


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