News Channel 6 Investigates: The 6 Most Dangerous Intersections, Part 1
By Deon Guillory, WJBF GMA Weekend Anchor/Reporter - email
Augusta, GA -
New numbers released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that unintentional injuries such as those on roads is one of the five biggest killers in the U.S.
Georgia and South Carolina have the highest numbers.
Accidents do happen, but there are six intersections in Richmond County where your chances are higher for getting into a crash.
Driving is a way of life. Our cars, trucks, and vans take us from Point A to Point B when we want, but one wrong turn can lead to a crash.
And there have been a lot of them lately...
So, WJBF News Channel 6 put in a request to the Richmond County Sheriff's Office for a list of its high accident locations.
These are 3 of the top 6:
We start with Peach Orchard Road and Lumpkin Road.
"I'm not surprised at all," said Peggy Edgar, who travels this intersection often and understands why it's one of the most dangerous. Edgar added, "The lights don't stay on long enough for you to make these turns and people still make them even after the light's changed and somebody's gonna get killed. That's all there is to it. Somebody's gonna get killed."
According to Richmond County Sheriff's Office accident numbers, Peach Orchard Road and Lumpkin Road had 25 collisions from April 2013 to April 2014, that's up from the 14 crashes for the same 12-month period a year earlier.
"All of our high crash areas are usually at the large intersections and these are the ones that are used everyday, mainly in the evening time, when folks are trying to get home from work," said Sergeant Danny Whitehead, with the Richmond County Sheriff's Office.
He says another big problem on the roads, is distracted driving.
Sgt. Whitehead said, "I think it's obvious that those gadgets play a big role in the majority of the accidents that we are having."
"I see a lot of people running red lights and talking on the cell phones, texting, and stuff coming over in the lanes," said Mark Wright, who talking about number 5 on our list, Highland Avenue and Gordon Highway.
Wright said, "I've almost got hit several times by people texting and driving."
Numbers show that there were 25 total collisions during the past 12 months on Highland Avenue and Gordon Highway and like our previous intersection, this number is up from 14 crashes a year before.
Walton Way and 15th Street is number 4 on our list.
Richmond County Sheriff's Office data shows Walton Way and 15th Street had 26 total accidents from April 2013 to April 2014 and like our other intersections, that's an increase from the previous 12 months.
Our cameras caught several people breaking the rules of the road at the fourth most dangerous intersection.
Sgt. Whitehead said, "The majority of the time it's following too closely and that comes with distracted driving."
They are cases that bother our drivers.
Wright said, "because when you're doing that, you're endangering other people's lives. You take someone's father away, someone's husband away. It's awful."
Edgar said, "I think you should never use your phone or all this distracting stuff in your car while you're driving. This is a 3,000 - 4,000 pound murder machine, just about it."
It is a machine we all rely on to get us to our destination safely.
In part two of this series, we will show you the three intersections that are the most dangerous and and we will also explain what the Richmond County Sheriff's Office is doing right now to bring down those numbers.