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Dangerous and Deadly Rural Roads

Updated: Thursday, July 10 2014, 10:01 AM CDT
CHAMPAIGN COUNTY-- "Some stick out in your mind more than others." Sgt. Dave Coffey has seen a lot of accidents in his 17 years with the Champaign County Sheriff's Office. He says it only takes one horrific accident to scare drivers straight. "We go to them routinely and it's not a pleasant thing to go to."

Chief Deputy Alan Jones says the summer months are particularly challenging for drivers as their vision is hampered near farm fields. "There's a greater recognition of these types of accidents when the corn is up." But still, he says, "We see these all year long. And it has a lot to do with driver inattentiveness, familiarity with the area, it could simply be terrain. As you see here there's some rolling hills in this intersection area."

Jones says most drivers he speaks with think the odds are against another car being in the same place at the same time. And he agrees. But too many times he says he has seen the consequences of guessing wrong. At 40 or 50 miles an hour, cars will clear most intersections in less than a second. Even if you do slow down or even stop when approaching the intersection, the margin for error is incredibly small.

As evidenced by an accident just a few weeks ago: Jones says, "A car came to a stop at the intersection. Stopped. And still collided with a car traveling across them because they didn't see them or they inched out too late and the other car was coming." Coffey adds, "It doesn't matter if it's signage or it's an unmarked intersection, all intersections in the country should be approached with due caution."Dangerous and Deadly Rural Roads

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