COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The South Carolina Department of Transportation unveiled a list of 18 intersections across the state they will be making improvements to under their Intersection Safety Program.
Officials say the 18 intersections were selected based on criteria like the percentage of reported crashes that resulted in injuries or fatalities and the crash rate.
Director of Traffic Engineering Rob Perry said, " We looked at intersections that are above the state average of 25% fatal/injury crashes. And then we took the crash rate. It gives us an apples to apples comparison of these intersections."
One of the 18 sets of intersections are the intersections of Colonial Drive and Academy Street and Colonial Drive and Marshall Street.
We spoke with drivers and business owners in the area. They believe the changes will be good.
Kaval Singh has owned the Q-Mart on the corner of Colonial and Academy for about a decade now. He said crashes are pretty common here. "There are too many accidents. Sometimes two times in a day."
According to data from SCDOT, over the past five years, there were 54 reported crashes at these two intersections. Just below half of those crashes resulted in injuries or fatalities.
Christopher Sims drives through these intersections all the time. He said he's not surprised. "It's always occupied because you have the hospital around here, churches and residential areas. There's always something going on around here."
SCDOT plans to use $13 million to make these improvements. They have some options at their disposal. Like improving pavement markings and maybe even adding signals to intersections that don’t have any.
Perry said, "Roundabouts are one countermeasure for an intersection that really reduces the number of conflict points. We've built about 20 roundabouts statewide. And roundabouts have proven to reduce crashes by 60%."
As far as to what will happen at the specific intersection of Colonial and Academy, that is left to be seen but Sims said he’s looking forward to those changes.
“I feel very happy this is where my tax money is going. It’s going to save lives. Makes the road smooth. I’m all for it,” he said.
List of intersections below: