Construction on 67/167 emphasizes need for drivers to pay attention | 11 Listens
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) — Traveling along highway 67/167 can be perilous, as evidenced by the number of wrecks along it since construction started.
More than 100 people commented on our Facebook page to say that they don't understand why the construction is taking so long or saying that the problem is drivers going far faster than the speed limit.
The stretch of road that crews are working to expand is causing major traffic woes. Folks are taking to social media to express frustration, with some even calling it a death trap.
"Quite honestly, that's what causes the accidents," Jacksonville Mayor Gary Fletcher said. "The speed limit's 55. And people have a tendency to go, sometimes, at least 10 miles over. That's been what I've seen."
Just last week, a 15-car pileup backed traffic up for hours. People posted on Facebook saying that they wish something would be done about people speeding in the area.
"It's a dangerous situation and people need to devote their full attention to driving," Fletcher said.
Hundreds of accidents have been reported since construction began on the stretch of Highway 67/167. According to the Highway Safety Office, there with 237 accidents in 2014, 256 in 2015 and 254 in 2016.
"Should you be in a fender-bender, continue to drive until you get to that place where you can pull over," Fletcher said.
There is also concerned about the immediate danger when someone is hurt because there is no shoulder lane for EMTs.
"They've put two or three places that we can get on the freeway, in that four miles or so, for emergency vehicles only," Fletcher said. "Let's look beyond this, the short term inconvenience to the long term benefit, toward what is gonna really be a nice stretch of road."
The project has three segments, two of which should be finished by the end of the year. The final segment between Main Street and Vandenberg Drive is slated to begin in spring of 2019. That should be finished in three years.