Neighbors: Upgrades to dangerous Johnston County intersection may be confusing drivers

People who live near a dangerous Triangle intersection say improvements made by the state Department of Transportation may be confusing drivers.

Melissa Keon who lives on one corner of the intersection of Highway 231 and Applewhite Road says a crash at the northern Johnston County intersection this morning is evidence of that.

She took pictures of the collision which she says is the fourth since the death of a child here in December.

And she says the driver who caused it told her what happened.

"She thought it was a four-way stop. She had stopped but as she proceeded to go she got T-boned," Keon told ABC 11.

She says she's lived at the intersection a year and crashes happen once a month on average.

In early January, a month after the crash that killed the boy, DOT came out and installed larger highly reflective stop signs on both sides of Applewhite Road in each direction.

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Some think the dual stop signs are what make people think there is a four-way stop.

"Adding the four signs, it's just at a glance you can be confused if that's a four-way stop or just in, you know, the one direction," Keon said.

A few hours after this morning's crash that trapped an elderly passenger in one of the vehicles, there was another close call at the intersection.

A man who saw it and saw an ABC 11 news car stopped to express his concerns.

He's not alone.

"My daughter is 18 and it does scare me that she's going to get hit," Keon said adding, "I have a 12-year old son. You know, I don't let him out in the front or side yard."

Keon says she knows that traffic volume at the intersection doesn't meet the threshold for DOT to install a full-blown traffic light.

But she thinks something more should be done.

"Some flashing lights either on the stop signs or, you know, hanging from the wires. Just something to catch your eye," she said.

DOT is not committing to that but a spokesman for the agency says it is still studying the intersection and what has happened since the new signs went up.

Today's wreck will now be part of the statistics for that study.
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