Local News

Employees Want Change to Deadly Intersection

Posted August 27, 2007 7:18 p.m. EDT

— Coworkers of two people killed in a wreck in Durham County last week say they want changes on a stretch of Old Oxford Highway near International Drive.

Those workers watched in horror last Wednesday as a dump truck smashed into a car of carrying AW North Carolina plant employees Harline M. Nebeth, 35, and Shonitta Hall, 31, both of Durham.

"Two of our team members were killed in the accident," said AW Vice President Will Collins. "The other person that was in the back seat is still recovering in the hospital."

"This has certainly been a trauma for our team members, and we're sad that all this has happened," Collins said.

The speed limit is 55 mph in front of the AW plant, in the growing Treyburn Corporation Park. The number of employees, cars and accidents is on the rise.

Collins said he and neighboring businesses expressed concern about the speed limit two years ago.

"We sent notification back in 2005 that we were interested in having this reviewed," Collins said. "And the speed limit has not been reduced."

State Department of Transportation operations engineers said the traffic count on Old Oxford Highway is not high enough for a speed-limit reduction.

The DOT's regional traffic safety engineer, however, said he is conducting a full investigation into the fatal wreck. A five-year crash history is under review, along with a field investigation, which could take up to four weeks.

Collins said he knows his request is one of many, but any change would help – "anything from a caution light to reducing the speed limit," Collins said.

The North Carolina Highway Patrol and the DOT are still investigating the accident.