Homeowner, city seek solutions after 6 cars crash into Raleigh home
Posted October 27, 2016
Raleigh, N.C. — A public meeting Thursday night attempted to find a solution to a dangerous intersection near a Raleigh home.
At least half a dozen vehicles have crashed into the home at the intersection of Fawn Glen Drive and New Hope Road over the past several years and homeowner Carlo Bernarte wants the state Department of Transportation to fix the problem so he can stop fixing his home.
Bernarte said drivers on New Hope Road have crashed into his home on Fawn Glen Drive in 2007, 2008, 2013, 2014, 2015 and, most recently, in August. Two of the crashes have been fatal.
"When they hit the stop sign, the stop sign ricocheted and went through the window," Bernarte said, recounting one of the crashes.
Bernarte said that stop sign barely missed hitting one of his children.
Road crews have installed different measures to protect the property, including installing reflective markers on the pavement, reflective inserts on guard rails and speed activated LED chevron lights, but serious crashes continue.
City and state engineers said the problem has less to do with the design of the road and more to do with drivers breaking traffic laws.
"Unfortunately, the vast majority of the crashes here are people who well exceed the speed limit and are drinking at the same time," said DOT engineer J.R. Hopkins.
DOT engineers have detailed crashes that have happened at the intersection since 2002. In all, 20 crashes have occurred over 14 years and 17 of those crashes involved drivers who were speeding or impaired.
The city's proposed solution is closing Fawn Glen Drive and extending the guardrail. That suggestion didn't get much support from a crowd looking for a solution with less impact on the community, particularly the Bernarte family.
"I look into the eyes of those children who are scared to go to bed every night," said community member Chris Shaw.
Shaw brought to Thursday's meeting a petition filled with more than 30,000 signatures. She and others at the meeting want the city to condemn the house and tear it down, which city and state leaders say they're not in a position to do.