Should There be a Stop Sign at 7-Mile and Nicholson?

Should there be a four-way stop at 7-Mile and Nicholson roads or are there other measures Caledonia can take to increase safety there?

After a serious accident over the weekend that sent three people to the hospital at the intersection of 7-Mile and Nicholson roads, some readers asked why there isn't a four-way stop there.

On the Caledonia Patch Facebook page, Becky Jones related her own accident experience at the corner, saying another driver ran the stop sign. Fortunately, there weren't any injuries.

"A guy ran the stop sign just as I was entering the intersection and I could not avoid hitting him. Perhaps a 4-way stop would be in order there," she wrote.

Julie Uher noted that it's par for the course to blow the stop signs.

"That is right by our house and people miss the stop signs all the time," she posted. "Dangerous!"

Getting a four-way stop there, though, means analysis and traffic studies. Caledoina Village Engineer Mike Hayek told Patch that the latest data he has for traffic flow puts the number of cars traveling north-south at about 850 per day and east-west at about 1,200 per day.

"Those numbers on face value might support a stop sign, but there are other ways to make the intersection safer without bringing all traffic to a stop," he said.

One method Hayek said he likes is the rumble strip; ridges placed into the pavement of the road that alert drivers they need to slow down.

"I get a lot of people who don't like those strips, but they work because they jolt drivers out of automatic pilot on those long, straight roads," he added.

Caledonia police Lt. Gary Larsen suggested putting signs that warn motorists that cross traffic doesn't stop.

"We have had some success reducing the number of accidents at 5-Mile and Nicholson and we think it's because we have signs approaching the intersection that give drivers a warning," he said.

On Patch, Susan Schrek offered some suggestions.

"Some tree removal would help, maybe a blinking light stop sign and, hate to say it but, some speed traps along Nicholson.," she said.

But, neither Hayek nor Trustee Jim Dobbs - head of the Public Works committee - have been contacted by residents about a four-way stop at 7-Mile and Nicholson. 

"As long as I've been on the board, I haven't heard from any residents about a four-way stop there," Dobbs said.

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Frances Martin August 16, 2013 at 09:26 AM
The flashing stop sign at G and H is very noticeable. Heather-can you find out if it's reduced accidents there? All the Nicholson Rd intersections are dangerous. 2 way stops are basically unsafe unless one road is noticeably larger than the cross road-like 31and 32.
wiplayer August 16, 2013 at 10:47 AM
Simple to answer. Yes. I have seen much of what the other folks have described. I do like the idea of at least a flashing stop sign but a stop light would be best.
KEEP ON KEEPING ON August 16, 2013 at 12:04 PM
Fran- I know that despite the flashing light at G and H that the home on the East side of the intersection has been the scene of an accident at least 2 times or more since installation. There are rumble strips there as well. I drive from NGB taking 5 mile, 6 or 7 mile every day during the school year to pick up my son in the county. I will not take 7 mile east because it is very difficult to see due to the trees on the SW corner. And people speed terribly on Nicholson. I wonder if some confusion lies in the fact that if you head west on any of those roads, some intersections are 2 way stops, some 4. I don't think people pay enough attention to that and presume they are all consistent. And I think a lot of drivers take liberties past 31 thinking it's rural, less traffic, I'll speed and roll through stops. For the specific intersection in question, I think the 1st discussion should be had with the property owners in area and their thoughts. And the tree situation.
Frances Martin August 16, 2013 at 01:29 PM
good idea re property owners. It would be the Groves on the Northwest corner -maybe the nearby owners could meet and figure out what they'd want . Bobby Grove is a county commissioner.
Tuco August 16, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Is this the same Mike Hayek who engineered the 4 mile underpass? Maybe this is the same Mike Hayek who said it's a state problem when I called and asked about a temporary stop sign on Hwy 31 by 5 mile road. Rumble strips are noisy and irritate the neighbors. The ones on 6 mile west of 31 were covered up to stop the noise. Install an LED flashing stop sign same as G and H. You can see the stop sign way beyond the train tracks.


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