Accidents worry Schoharie officials


By David Avitabile

Citing an increase in the number of accidents, state DOT officials are pushing for changes at the intersection of Routes 7 and 30A.
A letter from the state Department of Transportation stated that there are plans to make the intersection a four-way stop, similar to the intersection of Routes 7 and 10 in the Town of Richmondville, according to Supervisor Gene Milone.
The state, he added, has been monitoring the accident rate at the Schoharie intersection and it has been increasing for several years.
Mr. Milone, though, does not think the change would work.
"I don't see stop signs working there," he said.
He called DOT officials after getting the letter and was told stop signs require less maintenance and are cheaper than putting up traffic lights.
Mr. Milone suggested a traffic light at the intersection. There is already a flashing light at the intersection, which also includes Zicha Road.
"People understand traffic lights. They don't always understand stop signs."
Councilman Richard Sherman noted that many people go through four-way stops.
A letter to the DOT asking them to reconsider will be sent by the town.
"I think a traffic light will help a lot," Mr. Milone added.
Town officials are also concerned with the intersection of Routes 30 and 30A which was reworked by the state.
The reconfigured intersection has less of a hill and the road is straighter at the bottom.
The problem now is that it is more difficult for trucks to slow at the bottom of the hill and there have been two runaway trucks that have gone into the parking lot of the Apple Barrel, which is at the bottom of the hill.
The trucks have come close to a propane tank housed behind the store.
Town officials noted that "not truck traffic" signs at the top and bottom of the hill could solve the problem.
"That's a disaster waiting to happen," Mr. Milone warned.