Local News

Debate Lingers Over Raleigh's Worst Intersection

Posted February 10, 2003 5:41 a.m. EST

— Officials with a major insurance company, the city of Raleigh and the state Department of Transportation cannot agree on Raleigh's most dangerous intersection.

Officials with State Farm Insurance claim Six Forks Road at Millbrook Road is Raleigh's most dangerous intersection. Officials with the insurance company also said it is the third worst intersection statewide.

"I think the light is a little bit too long, so you get a lot of people who are anxious to get through the light, so they kind of take some chances to make right turns when they're not supposed to and try to gun it," driver Deborah Overaker said.

DOT and city officials studied the intersection, but they did not reach the same conclusion. However, State Farm Insurance offered $20,000 for a consultant study to improve safety.

"It's good for the city because we get the expertise of a consultant to come in, look over our shoulders and verify the things that we think are going on, and it's a win-win for State Farm because it could reduce accidents," city traffic engineer Mike Kennon said.

City officials claim the worst intersection is the one at Wake Forest Road and the Beltline. Officials say there have been 105 crashes in one year. Officials claim the second-worst intersection is at South Saunders Street at the Beltline with 98 wrecks in one year. Officials say the third-worst intersection at Six Forks Road at the Beltline has seen 84 collisions in one year, with 58 of them being rear-end crashes.

The city now plans to add turn lanes and raised medians to reduce the accident count at Six Forks Road and Millbrook Road. There are plans to improve the other intersections, but the results are years away.

State Farm Insurance officials use the number of claims they receive to rank dangerous intersections. Raleigh officials and the DOT calculate the total number of crashes.