VERONA, N.Y. ---- The NYSDOT issued a statement on Monday afternoon saying it is conducting a traffic study of an intersection that has been the scene of a number of traffic accidents, some of which have been fatal.
On Saturday, 95-year-old Alden Vierow was involved in a car accident after trying to cross the intersection. The Oneida County Sheriff's office said his injuries were not life-threatening, but he later died on his way to the hospital.
The Town of Verona is requesting accident data from local police to provide to the DOT for their investigation. The DOT said the road needs to meet certain criteria in order for a traffic light to be installed. But town officials said they will take anything that will make the intersection more visible, and gets people to slow down.
"Something is better than nothing. Granted there isn't a lot of traffic that goes through if you get the numbers. The numbers may show there's not a lot of traffic crossing that road but at the same time for the folks that are crossing, we want it to be as safe as possible," said Councilman Fritz Scherz.
The Town has asked the DOT to look at this intersection before but said nothing has come of it. Oneida County Legislator Cynthia Rogers-Witt said she requested the DOT do a study last year, and said it's been under investigation since then. Witt said the DOT told her a few months ago prior to the accident, some short-term fixes to the intersection would-be road markings and signage. They also said a traffic signal was not warranted at the time.
One of the main concerns of the road is visibility. People that need to cross the road or head West, drivers need to cross two busy lanes of traffic to get to the median, and then turn onto the roadway.
"It's one of those things where you're going to want to take another couple of extra looks. And you have to consider the lanes that you're crossing over, the traffic is moving at a pretty good pace," said Sheriff Robert Maciol.
The NYSDOT issued a statement stating
"Safety is always a top priority of the New York State Department of Transportation. We are in the midst of an ongoing safety study at this location and will review the results when it is completed."
-Jim Piccola, NYS Department of Transportation