MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCSC) - The South Carolina Department of Transportation says it is working with the town of Mount Pleasant to determine whether changes to an intersection some have called dangerous are warranted.
Mount Pleasant community members say they fear for the lives of their neighbors, themselves and children around a dangerous entrance to their development along North Highway 17.
Less than a week ago, two people lost their lives on Hwy 17 and Bee Hive road after a Charleston County Sheriff’s deputy collided with another car that was trying to turn onto the highway.
People who live in the Tupelo neighborhood across the highway say they have been looking for help in making the area safer for more than a year.
“At minimum slowing the speedwell before it comes into the section,” neighbor Jenn Paul said. With that blind curve, you really have to gun it out of the neighborhood and I fear what happens if someone’s car doesn’t got it so fast.”
Tupelo Homeowner Association leaders say they have reached out to the state department of transportation and the town asking for a traffic study, decreased speed from the current 55 miles per hour and even a potential stoplight.
“This is what we have been predicting would happen,” HOA Vice President William Peppard said. “We have been talking to the town about for the past year and it finally happened and unfortunately this is going to cause some action.”
Data from the state department of transportation shows more than 41,000 cars use North Highway 17 on average every day.
Paul says she does not allow her children to regularly ride the bus for fears of a serious accident.
“We don’t love the idea of them riding the bus because there’s just no way that a bus can gun it out of here like we do with our cars,” Paul said.
The HOA says they want to do everything they can to help local and state officials redesign the area as commercial development continues to grow.
“We want to see more forward-thinking by the lawmakers and not reactive,” Peppard said.
SCDOT spokesman Robert Kudelka released this statement Monday morning:
SCDOT is working with the Town on the impacts of potential development and if a signal is would be warranted as part of the development.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to all involved in this tragic accident. SCDOT will be reviewing the accident report to gain an understanding of what happened and determine if there is any engineering action needed. SCDOT is working with the Town on the impacts of potential development and if a signal is would be warranted as part of the development. Regarding general concerns of speeding, we would refer that to law enforcement.
The town of Mount Pleasant has not yet responded to requests for comment.