Omaha traffic engineers looking into solutions for consistent crashes at 192nd & Dodge
OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Investigating the dangers at a west Omaha intersection. Several crashes are unfolding the same way at the same time of day.
It’s happening at the intersection of 192nd and West Dodge Road.
The sheer volume of cars passing through the intersection on busy weekday mornings is intense and growing.
At 192nd and West Dodge, morning traffic accidents usually don’t mean a fender bender. They mean towed cars and deployed airbags.
Joline Wellendorf has seen the danger first-hand.
“There are always ambulance, police, fire, traffic snarls,” Wellendorf said. “It’s a mess.”
The city’s traffic engineer tells us there are more dangerous intersections, but he says the city is very concerned because nearly all of these crashes are happening the exact same way at the same time of day.
An Omaha traffic engineer says the main pattern of crashes involved drivers in the southbound left lanes colliding with northbound through vehicles.
“If you’re trying to get to the hospital and you’re having anxiety because there’s a line of cars going up that ramp behind you and you’re feeling the pressure to pull out, that’s when it happens,” Wellendorf added.
The city has a solution - they’re planning a diverging diamond interchange project with the Nebraska Department of Transportation, but that’s not slated to start until 2024.
And with a private developer building along the same street, Wellendorf says we can’t wait any longer.
“I don’t see why we should add additional traffic when we already have an issue and then try to reroute more traffic and more people.”
She’d like to see some sort of traffic signal, but the engineer says it just won’t work for two reasons. Recent traffic counts don’t meet national standards for signals and a signal still requires the permitted left turn across oncoming traffic.
“Even if it was temporarily lowering the speed limit, putting in a four-way stop, there’s gotta be something we can do to make this safer.”
Omaha’s traffic engineer says the recent widening of 192nd street because of the development in the area is a factor in the recent crashes.
The department is looking into strategies to improve the situation now.
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