Local News

Changes Made At Deadly Wilson Intersection

Posted April 28, 2006

— Two deadly accidents just two days apart put a spotlight on one local intersection. Now, Department of Transportation crews are trying to make the busy Wilson intersection easier for drivers to navigate.

Nannie Dew, 90, died when a car slammed into the side of the car she was riding in earlier this month they tried to cross

Highway 301 at Forest Hills Road

. Two days, later another man died in a nearly identical accident at the same intersection.

"The number of wrecks that happened previously should have thrown up a red flag before then," said Bobby Dew, Nannie Dew's son.

Police pulled three years worth of accident reports and asked the DOT to investigate. Crews aren't waiting to make changes -- they already added more signs to clearly mark the direction of each light. They also made the green light three seconds longer to give drivers more time to cross Highway 301.

"It is a confusing intersection," said traffic engineer Andy Brown. "The signal was working properly before the accidents occurred. It continues to work properly."

Brown said many of the problems occur when drivers try to cross into a parking lot of a restaurant at the intersection.

"A lot of fender benders, a lot of confusion with people coming through this intersection," said restaurant general manager Duane Burnett.

The DOT is talking with owners about possibly moving the driveway to make the intersection less confusing.

"I think its very important and it needs to happen very quickly," said Burnett.

Nannie Dew's family is grateful to see investigators taking serious action.

"We'd like to think she didn't die in vain and that maybe her passing did help in some way, and maybe down the road will help save someone's life," said Bobby Dew.

DOT officials said they are continuing to investigate the intersection and could recommend more changes.


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