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Council seeks safer intersection at County Road 1 and Hwy 62

Though there appears to be only a glimmer of hope the Ministry of Transportation will change its mind on making the intersection of County Road 1 and Hwy 62 safer, council is hoping some pressure may be put to good effect.

“Traffic incidents at the intersection of Highway 62 and County Road 1 have increased since 2017,” said Brad Nieman in his resolution to direct the County to work with staff, police services, the traffic advisory committee and the province to develop a solution.

“There have been a lot of near-misses there. Before the traffic advisory committee right now is speed reduction on County Road 1 east of 62, and that may help some problems at the intersection.

He wants to see some work with the MTO to make the intersection safer, noting observances of cars wanting to turn each way off 62, but neither appeared to know who was doing what. That, it was noted, could be partially due to the fact the intersection is not square.

Councillor Phil Prinzen, a volunteer fire fighter, noted in the majority of accidents he has responded to at that intersection seem to relate to the fact the intersection down the road at County Roads 1 and 2 have a four-way stop and it is expected by some that the next intersection is the same.

The ideas of reduced speeds, better road design, a traffic circle and signs were all mentioned, and it was noted repeated requests to the ministry have been dismissed.

Councillor Bill Roberts noted the last council also had difficulty getting MTO attention for the intersection at County Roads 14 and 62.

“It’s my understanding that collision counts are communicated to the MTO and they see no problem with the intersection, so we would have our work cut out for us,” said Mayor Steve Ferguson.

Acting CAO Robert McAuley noted the County is trying to access the statistical data from the MTO as it is no longer available from the OPP as it used to be.

“This intersection has come up before with them and from their engineering point of view they do not see any improvements necessary – both traffic signals and a round-a-bout were floated and… they rejected both opportunities. We also suggested to them that widening of that area would facilitate future roundabouts but they rejected that as well. The ministry’s position is there’s no problem here. That may change with a submission, or lobbying effort by groups here.”

Councillor Bill McMahon, questioning how the round-a-bout got to Picton at Hwy 33 and County Road 1, was told by McAuley it was the first one in the province approved after a lobbying effort by the County ‘to do something’. It was installed as a pilot and is now being repeated throughout the province.

“So, there’s lessons to be learned there that we could possibly use one time again?” asked McMahon.

“Absolutely,” answered McAuley.

Filed Under: Local News

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  1. Jack says:

    Excellent idea Steve, much less expensive than a roundabout, I think speed on Hwy 62 and the angle County Road 1 meets 62 are the biggest factors, maybe that could be reconfigured. Also our elderly population contributes, my wife had an accident at this intersection a few years ago, turns out the person who struck my wife had dementia.

  2. A little “Fact checking” exposes the kinds of disinformation that we often see used to support government programs in the County, and unfortunately this same disinformation is used to guide many questionable decisions here.
    Specifically: “Councillor Bill McMahon, questioning how the round-a-bout got to Picton at Hwy 33 and County Road 1, was told by McAuley it was the first one in the province approved after a lobbying effort by the County ‘to do something’. It was installed as a pilot and is now being repeated throughout the province.”

    Part of the confusion may stem from the use of the two terms “Traffic Circle” and “Roundabout”. The term Traffic Circle is immediately meaningful because it clearly describes how traffic is controlled by circular geometry. Whereas, a Roundabout is meaningless out of context, [sounds like a merry-go-round] and only has meaning for those with cultural ties to places where “Roundabouts” have been in use.
    The City of Hamilton at the other end of Lake Ontario, created the Queenston Traffic Circle about 4 decades ago, as the first in Canada. Then in 2002, long before the PEC traffic circle came into being, the City of Hamilton was already upgrading their traffic circles [following amalgamation], and attempting to standardize them. The term Roundabout seems to have been imported into Canada from away, and the City of Hamilton has used it as well.

  3. Steve says:

    I shudder at the thought as this could be a slippery slope thing, but, a speed camera may be warranted here. If you know about it you will slow down, if you don’t, well then, you will enhance the county coffers.

  4. Mark says:

    I agree with Gary. Biggest issue is that this intersection is not at 90 degree angles. Accidents are historical with many deaths 40 to 50 years ago. Schoharie, Sandy Hook and Hwy 33 was also not at 90 degree angles resulting in multiple deaths. Thus the round a bout.

  5. I live right close to Hwy 62 and Cty Rd 1 and to hear the screeching of the tires and then the thud is frightening l just shutter There also have been so many near misses as the big rigs lay on there horns. Two accidents in two days is not serious enough for the MTO to consider a round about is beyond comprehension , those aren’t the only ones that have happened there either. I urge the MTO to reconsider putting in a round about.

  6. I’m a safety professional, and the Province of Ontario and it’s agencies have one of the worst safety cultures in Canada, which has resulted in many preventable deaths and injuries.
    When part of the Algo Centre Mall in Elliot Lake collapsed in 2012, killing two women, and injuring 17 others, Justice Paul Belanger had this to say:
    “Apathy, neglect and indifference to mediocrity, ineptitude, incompetence and outright greed” riddled the fate of the mall, the report says. The Belanger report points out that officials with the provincial Ministry of Labour, which had offices in the mall, appeared curiously indifferent to the state of disrepair, and unresponsive to complaints.
    When the MTO presented the possible options for reconstructing the Skyway Bridge a couple of years ago, they assiduously avoided any talk of public safety. When I raised the question of pedestrian and cycling safety I was told quietly to send in my comments, no public discussions. The presenters refused to discuss public safety. Most of our politicians were bamboozled, and thought the bridge would be safe for all. After challenging the MTO’s presentation in writing, I finally received a letter from the project leaders admitting that the redo would not be safe for pedestrians and cyclists, but they would not be prevented from using the bridge.
    The MTO is not acting in our best interest in many areas, and it’s time we forced them to protect our families, or get someone who will.

  7. Gary Mooney says:

    I think there are several problems with the intersection at CR-1 and 62:
    * As Dave Nixon pointed out, drivers on 62 are often going much faster than the speed limit, and drivers on CR-1 misjudge the time they have to get across.
    * The intersection is not right angles, so it’s possible that view of an oncoming vehicle is blocked by the pillar between front and back windows.
    * People heading west on CR-1 have just come through a 4-way stop at CR-2 and may assume that there’s another 4-way stop at 62.

    It’s extremely difficult to get people to change behaviours, so it’s necessary to anticipate danger and minimize the risk through design of, and features at, intersections. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem that this is being done at CR-1 and 62.

    I’m not inclined to blame the politicians. Issues like this are addressed by the engineering staff and not by politicians.

  8. Diane Boomhower says:

    The MTO should really reevaluate this intersection. Some drivers nowadays just don’t pay attention! They are always in a hurry to get to their destination. The MTO should reconsider putting a roundabout here since the stop signs obviously don’t work, or a four way with lights, not stop signs.

  9. Mark says:

    Expecting traffic to flow at 80 km on highway 62 is ridiculous. Should be 100 km and fine above.

  10. Dave Nixon says:

    Politicians running true to form. The problem is never with incompetent drivers or with a lack of enforcement, it’s always with the infrastructure (the MTO recently upgraded the intersection of CR1 and Hwy 62). Hwy 62 is a notorious drag strip. Drivers sit at the CR1 or CR14 stop signs and assume the cars on Hwy 62 are approaching at the speed limit so they assume they have time to cross/merge. Much of the traffic on Hwy 62 moves at 90-100 km/h which makes life very difficult for cross/merging traffic. Aggressive drivers are all over you before you can accelerate to the speed limit much less to warp speed. At those speeds, one mistake is sometimes all it takes to result in an accident. Surprisingly (I’m being facetious) the proposed solution is the same as that proposed by local politicians for the death trap affectionately known as the 401 namely spending millions on infrastructure. All to protect drivers from their own incompetence. Fines aren’t the only penalties for ignoring the traffic laws. Sometimes the penalty is serious injury or death. In other words, we get what we deserve. C’est la vie.

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