Dallas Co. votes to slow driversPublished 9:06pm Thursday, August 15, 2013
For months residents on Dallas County Road 344, located in Orrville, have dealt with the stress of lawless drivers using their street as a racing track. The road already has small speed cushions and a “Children at Play” sign, but that doesn’t seem to be slowing drivers down.
County Commissioner Larry Nickels, who covers District 4 of the county, has spoken with the affected residents and brought a formal request before the Dallas County Commission Monday to install speed bumps on that road to help eliminate careless drivers.
“I believe almost every resident on County Road 344 has signed a petition to get something done,” Nickels told the commission. “People want them to have to stop. They’re drag racing out there right now.”
Nickels said speed bumps used to be one of the most unpopular things for residential areas and added the public would “crucify commissioners” who had them installed. Now, Nickels said the tides have turned, and the residents are eager to have something in place to force a stop.
County Road 344 resident Denolia Marshall was one of many who signed the petition. Marshall said it was because drivers fly down County Road 344 so fast while countless small children play and ride their bikes on the street, something had to be done before someone got seriously injured.
“They’re treating this street like a highway or something. There’s too many little kids out here to drive that way,” Marshall said, adding while she doesn’t have any small children herself, she does have several grandchildren who live and play in the area.
Marshall said her biggest fear when she thinks about the speeds some drivers reach near her grandchildren and neighbors is someone getting hurt.
“Losing control and hitting one of those little kids playing near the street or out there riding bikes or even winding up in somebody’s house,” she said, voice trembling, noting it hasn’t been a year since a reckless driver struck a telephone pole on her street, knocking it into another resident’s yard.
The careless drivers speed down County Road 344 both night and day, Marshall said, which is why she hopes action will soon be taken.
Commissioner Nickels request for six speed bumps on the county road was approved Monday by the commission.
Dallas County engineer Coosa Jones estimated the project to cost between $200 and $300.
“We sure appreciate it,” Marshall said after hearing speed bumps are slated to be installed. “I think it will help — we hope so, we really do.”