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Howard Road, Ga. 365 traffic signal now operational

Light added to intersection after several wrecks

POSTED: October 24, 2012 10:30 p.m.

A long-awaited traffic light is now operating at Ga. 365 and Howard Road.

The signal had been in test mode since last week.

The Georgia Department of Transportation has put up permanent signs in the median, on the shoulder and over the lanes in each direction alerting motorists of the signal.

Also up are two changeable message signs warning motorists to slow because of the new signal. They will remain in place through the weekend, said Teri Pope, spokeswoman for the DOT’s Hall County-based District 1.

The intersection also features pedestrian crossings, which, according to Pope, is a federal requirement.

Gainesville, the DOT and RaceTrac convenience store, which sits at the intersection, have been involved in the project.

Work on the signal began after public outcry over multiple wrecks at the intersection.

The DOT had planned only flashing yellow lights and new lane striping because a study had shown the intersection did not meet any of the thresholds for installing a signal, officials said.

But public interest in the intersection heightened after an April 28 crash that killed Anna Hermansen of Clayton.

In a letter from the Hall County Board of Commissioners to the DOT, commissioners cited 14 crashes in that area in 2012.

Gov. Nathan Deal’s chief of staff, Chris Riley, and Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Director Harris Blackwood also expressed concerns about the intersection to DOT Commissioner Keith Golden.

“It will take individuals time to get accustomed to the changes, especially those who do not travel the road frequently,” said Cpl. Kevin Holbrook, spokesman for the Gainesville Police Department, in advising caution at the intersection.

“We will continue to monitor the intersection for any safety issues and take appropriate action if necessary.”


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