By AMANDA KIMBLE
STEPHENVILLE (December 7, 2016) – The Stephenville City council approved a request from Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to reduce the speed limit to 55 mph along a stretch of highway on Tuesday.
Police Chief Jason King said state officials informed him a study conducted on all 75 mph highways within TxDOT’s Fort Worth district was recently conducted, leading the agency to make revisions in certain areas. When proposed changes fall within city limits, TxDOT requests an ordinance from the governing body approving the change.
King said the affected portion of US Highway 377/67 South is located between Campbell Auto Body and Stephenville Limits, at the Landfill Road intersection.
“Based on the results of that study, TxDOT determined a change needed to be made,” King said.
The affected portion of highway measures less than four-tenths of a mile, and the ordinance states that transportation code allows such revisions when an investigation determines the conditions along a highway, the amount of traffic or other issues make it unsafe.
“Over the last several years, there have been some accidents in that area (within the city limits),” King said. “I would not classify it as a high accident area, but there is a chance of more devastating accidents occurring.”
The fairly busy landfill intersection spills slow traveling traffic, including motorists from residential neighborhoods, Stephenville Christian School and a Rock House facility, into traffic traveling at 75 mph. Highway 377/67 South also has a fairly significant hill that can reduce reaction time and line of sight for motorists traveling toward Dublin.
King said he believes the reduction in speed was a positive step toward improving safety.
Meanwhile, The Flash has spoken with officials with TxDOT to determine if the recent district-wide study calls for adjustments to other stretches of highway in Erath County. That information will be shared as soon as it become available.