EAST BRIDGEWATER, Mass. - East Bridgewater Police and Department of Public Works (DPW) are taking action after two crashes at a dangerous intersection in as many days.
The five-leg intersection connects Plymouth Street (Route 106) with Washington Street, Old Plymouth Street, Davenport Road and Murray Road.
“I have been in direct contact [Wednesday] DPW Director Haines, Fire Chief Timothy Harhen, and with the Town Administrator and Board of Selectmen about short-term and long-term safety solutions that we have to address this intersection,” Police Chief Scott Allen said. “We will be increasing our traffic enforcement in the area and I would advise drivers to slow down and be mindful of the stop signs on the roads.”
While the intersection has been an area of concern for both Chief Allen and DPW Director John Haines in the past, with the recent crashes they have taken measures to immediately address safety measures at the intersection and will be taking additional steps in the coming weeks and months.
Chief Allen has ordered ramped up police patrols of the area. Police have also placed a mobile speed trailer on Plymouth Street near the intersection.
Director Haines moved two message boards onto Washington and Old Plymouth streets Wednesday. The message boards will warn drivers of the approaching stop signs.
Also, the DPW recently ordered flashing LED stop signs to replace the signs on Washington and Old Plymouth streets. They will be installed once they have been delivered.
A tractor trailer and SUV collided just before 9 a.m. Wednesday at the intersection of Plymouth and Washington streets. The 60-year-old woman driving the SUV suffered minor injuries and was taken to the hospital. The man driving the tractor trailer wasn't hurt.
On Tuesday morning, a pick-up truck collided with a dump truck at the same intersection. Four people were injured, including two children.
In both of these crashes, the initial investigations indicate the drivers of the vehicles traveling south on Washington Street blew through the stop sign as they approached Plymouth Street. The investigations didn't find the drivers of the dump truck or tractor trailer - who were traveling down Route 106 - to be at fault.
“This intersection was subject of an Old Colony Planning Council Road Safety Audit in 2011, at the town’s request,” Director Haines said. “Within the past year, the DPW and police department have been looking at viable solutions for safety concerns for this intersection, as well as several other intersections where there have been a higher than average number of accidents.”
In 2015, the DPW contracted a professional traffic engineering company. Action plans were implemented for several of the audit recommendations for this particular intersection. In 2016, the DPW presented a capital project to improve the safety concerns in the area, but funding was denied.
Sgt. William Patterson, the police department’s Traffic Control Supervisor, has been working closely with DPW staff to address multiple areas of concern through East Bridgewater. Improvements have been made and are currently being addressed at other intersections, including Central and Washington streets and Summer and Belmont streets.
Boston 25 News reached out to East Bridgewater Police to get a history of crashes at the intersection of Plymouth and Washington streets.
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