Monday, September 04, 2006
Most Dangerous 25 MPH Road In Hendry?
County May Face Liability For Lack Of Speed Or Warning Signs?
LABELLE, FLORIDA -- On what may be Hendry county's most dangerous residential street, vehicles running into trees and light posts on the median are a commonplace incident neighbors say. Over the last several weeks, two concrete street light poles and one palm tree has been hit and knocked to the ground by out-of-control pickup trucks.
(photo: FPL repairman repairs line on downed concrete light pole along Birchwood)
Residents of Port LaBelle's Laurel Oaks have complained to the Hendry county engineer's office about speeding vehicles and lack of signs at the curve on Birchwood Parkway just north of State Road 80 on the way to the Port LaBelle Inn. The two mile long four-lane road section crosses into Glades county north of SR80. The Hendry county road department has no speed limit signs or curve warning signs on the Hendry section where the roadway changes from Glades county to Hendry county. A dangerous curve surprises drivers who speed north and south bound along the road and find the forty-five degree turn coming upon them. Drivers get into trouble northbound after turning north from State Road 80 onto Birchwood because there is no speed limit sign until after the forty-five degree turn in the road, where there's a 25-mph speed limit sign, but it's placed in the wrong place for a driver trying to negotiate the road at 35 to 45 mph.
Drivers hitting the light poles or one of the dozens of trees on the median have little recourse after their vehicle is towed away, which is happening at a good pace in recent weeks. So far there have not been any serious injuries to motorists, but Florida Power and Light crews are kept busy replacing the concrete poles, and local auto body shops are reaping the business of hapless drivers along Birchwood Parkway.