COVINGTON -- Newton County is putting radar signs on Brown Bridge Road near Riverstone Parkway in hopes of alerting motorists to their speed and preventing additional accidents there.
There have been several accidents and a fatality in that area, prompting the county to conduct a traffic count to determine the number and speed of vehicles, according to County Engineer Tom Garrett.
"In 24 hours, there was a total of 11,516 vehicles. The posted speed limit is 45 (mph). The statistic generally used to characterize vehicle speeds is the 85th percentile. The 85th percentile speed for this study in the westbound lane was 55 mph."
More than 8 percent of vehicles in both lanes exceed 55 mph and 54 vehicles exceeded 65 mph.
With that information, county officials decided to put two radar signs, one in each direction, on the roadway.
The radar signs will be similar in design to the signs on Brown Bridge Road near Magnet Road, also installed as the result of multiple accidents, including one fatality, Garrett said.
"We are gathering data on speeds before the sign installation to determine a baseline for comparison to the data after the radar signs are installed. This will help establish their effectiveness for future applications. The priority is to make drivers aware of the posted speed limit, and also of their traveling speed," Garrett said.
Other options included shoulder widening and/or installing a guard rail but Garrett said those would be cost prohibitive. The road design is acceptable for the set speed limit of 45 miles per hour, he said.