RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina is getting ready to spend millions on adding rumble strips to wake up drowsy drivers, but some are already questioning the move before a single strip hits the ground.
In the next two years, the state will install rumble strips along roadways including Interstate 95 from Wilson County to the Virginia line, Interstate 85 through Durham County, the northern half of Interstate 440 and Wade Avenue, all of Interstate 540 and U.S. Highway 1 South of Henderson to Interstate 85.
The state Department of Transportation plans a total of 46 rumble strip projects statewide, but that is going to leave some areas out to the dismay of some people.
Sgt. Martin Jones, of the state Highway Patrol, likes more rumble strips, but he wishes the DOT was doing more in Vance and Warren counties. He said 26 percent of Vance County wrecks are caused by drivers asleep at the wheel. In Warren County, officials claim sleepy drivers cause 33 percent of wrecks.
"People leave from New York up north or even farther south, and it seems like when they get to this area that they're just tired," Jones said.
In May, a dozing truck driver died in a
fiery I-85 wreck
in Warren County. Warren Jennings said he could see the flames from his convenience store.
"They need to do more, but I realize that there has to be a starting and stopping point for all of it and anything to help any stretch in this area needs to be done," he said.
State transportation officials have set aside $7 million for the rumble strips.