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Light installed at dangerous intersection

By Staff
NEW LIGHT Lauderdale County Patrolman Glenn Knight said the new blinking yellow light at the Highway 19 intersection in front of Southeast Lauderdale School "makes people aware that there's a speed zone" but said "it's not a picnic." Photo by Carisa McCain/The Meridian Star
By Chris Allen Baker / staff writer
May 6, 2002
Officials hope a flashing caution light installed at a major county intersection will help protect school children and motorists.
The light was installed at the intersection of Highway 19 and Long Creek-Vimville Road, a major thoroughfare for buses carrying students from Southeast Lauderdale elementary, middle and high schools.
The light blinks yellow for traffic approaching the intersection on Highway 19 and red for traffic on Long Creek-Vimville Road. Until now, a county patrolman was all that stood between orderly flow of traffic and a possible accident.
Boswell said a county patrolman will remain at the intersection.
Safety concerns about the intersection have lingered for about two years, with Lauderdale County supervisors' requests for a traffic signal being largely ignored by the Mississippi Department of Transportation until the Legislature encouraged MDOT to install the signal.
Bob Mabry, assistant state traffic engineer at MDOT, said flashing caution signals usually cost about $4,000. He said signals use $200 annually in electricity and require about $400 for maintenance.
Boswell said the light is a step in the right direction, but wants to see a better signal installed. He wants one that blinks and becomes a regular stoplight during school hours.