The Since You Asked in Thursday's newspaper was not adequately addressed by Gary Leaming of the Oregon Department of Transportation. I have lived in Jacksonville for more than 20 years, and since the last changes ODOT made to the intersection in questions several years ago, I have seen a great increase in accidents.
Extending the turn lane on Highway 238 leading up to a left turn onto West Main Street so they can better view oncoming traffic will solve only a minor part of the problem. More important and not addressed at all by Gary Leaming is:
Drivers going toward Jacksonville on Hwy. 238 believe they can make a hard left turn onto West Main in front of traffic from Jacksonville making a sweeping right turn onto West Main at about 20-plus mph. There needs to be a stop sign on Highway 238 at that intersection in the left-turn lane only. This would allow oncoming traffic from Jacksonville to go straight or continue right without having to worry about traffic turning left onto West Main in front of them. At the very least, there should be a "yield" sign indicating that it means yield to all oncoming traffic, including that traffic from Jacksonville continuing onto West Main.
There is no doubt that this would reduce the majority of accidents at this intersection.
— Jim Moreau, Jacksonville
Well, Jim, ODOT's spokesman said in Thursday's column there are no plans for a stop light or traffic signal, but we know the road masters are loyal readers of Since You Asked (as are all right-minded people), so maybe they'll take your comments to heart. You can always hope.
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