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Northwood traffic problem

By Nancy Reichle
Posted Wednesday, February 1, 2006

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Pittsboro, NC - I am Nancy Reichle and am the Director of the Carolina Living and Learning Center (CLLC) which is located just across the highway from Northwood High School. We are a residential and vocational program for adults with autism and have about fifty staff members who work on 3 different shifts. We also have a training building which hosts workshops and we have many visitors to our program.

The problem that I am very concerned about is the behavior of drivers who are trying to get to Northwood in the mornings. To avoid long lines in other directions, drivers turn onto Russet Run and flip around to head straight across 15-501 into the high school. To do this, the high school students and sometimes even parents are turning rapidly to the right onto an access road and immediately turning across Russet Run without yielding to oncoming traffic. All these drivers assume that anyone coming down Russet Run is doing what they are doing and they don't want anyone to get ahead of them. This sets up the potential for CLLC staff and visitors to hit the turning drivers broadside as they make the unexpected turn.

We have reported this problem repeatedly to the highway patrol and to the high school administration. Occasionally, an office will be sent out but unless there is someone there every morning, the problem witll not be solved.

The highway patrol is going to go out today (1/31) and change the timings on the light to try to improve the situation.

The former principal of Northwood monitored this situation every morning in his car sitting at the intersection.

Please spread the word about this very dangerous situation. Getting to the high school on time in the morning clearly presents a challenge to many people. We cannot let the solution to that problem risk the lives of our students and the CLLC employees.

Thanks for your help.

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