Public Safety Committee plans changes

During the Henderson City Council meeting Nov. 14, the Public Safety Committee, chaired by City Council member Lonnie Davis, reported on several recommended changes.

Frank Frazier, the city’s director of engineering, reported that the committee went through several streets such as Lynne Avenue, Coble Boulevard and Clark Street to examine specific traffic issues. They determined that the traffic signals at the intersection of Clark Street and Montgomery Street do not serve their purpose. They recommended that the light be taken down when it breaks down and replaced with a four-way stop. They further recommended that it be done over a transition period.

Henderson Mayor Clem Seifert asked that ordinances be drafted for the next meeting.

Frazier reported that there is no flashing school speed sign for Clark Street. Also, he informed the council that speeding has been occurring on Pinkston Street. Speed bumps, according to Frazier, cannot be used as a traffic calming measure because the street is the province of the North Carolina Department of Transportation.

Frazier also said to the council that there is a need for action on Fairway Drive to reduce speeding and passing on that street. Although he did not feel that speed bumps were appropriate, Frazier suggesting marking the street with double-yellow lines and posting more signs. He told the council that new signs are needed for the golf cart crossing.

Seifert asked what the parameters were for whether streets have lane markings. Frazier replied that he did not know, but that he hoped double-yellow center lines on Fairway would eliminate vehicles passing one another.

After the motion to accept the minutes of the Public Safety Committee passed unanimously, City Attorney John Zollicoffer raised issues concerning what he perceived to be hazards. One concern he brought to the council was the intersection of Ruin Creek Road and Graham Avenue.

“Someone is going to get killed,” Zollicoffer told the council.

Seifert indicated that there is no “signalization” planned for that intersection. He said he needed to see if the state would do something.

Frazier indicated that the plans call for a traffic signal at that intersection.

Zollicoffer’s second concern was with teens dialing cellular telephones while riding bicycles. According to the city attorney, they wobble all over the road.

Council member Mary Emma Evans mentioned the intersection of Americal Road and N.C. 39 as a potential danger area as well.