Recently, I read an article in the Fort Pierce Tribune concerning the worst intersections in the Treasure Coast area. I agree there are several dangerous and confusing intersections in the area and as a local personal injury attorney who has represented the injured since 1980, I have handled several accident cases which have occurred at these dangerous intersections.
The intersection at Georgia Avenue/Sunrise Boulevard/US 1 in Fort Pierce is a confusing intersection. I have handled several accident cases that have occurred at this intersection, and without question, the three arteries make this intersection dangerous. I think traffic could be alleviated through the Georgia Avenue/Sunrise Boulevard/US 1 intersection by either diverting or redirecting traffic on southbound Sunrise Boulevard or eastbound Georgia Avenue. One of the most dangerous and awkward situations at the US 1/Georgia Avenue intersection involves semi-truck traffic. There is a large rail yard to the east of that intersection, and several times a day, trains load and unload trailers that are picked up and delivered by semi-trucks. I think the majority of this traffic is headed to the Wal-Mart Distribution Center. Unfortunately, semi-trucks have a difficult time negotiating the turn from US 1 onto eastbound Georgia Avenue, and it is difficult for these trucks to exit Georgia Avenue because the traffic stopped on US 1 makes it difficult for them to make a left-hand turn onto US 1. I think the intersection needs to be redesigned so semi-trucks have easier access to and from US 1 into the FEC rail yard.
Another intersection that is dangerous to pedestrian traffic is the intersection of US 1 and St. Lucie Boulevard, north of Fort Pierce. There are a number of mobile homes, several convenience stores, and a roadside barbecue stand located at or near that intersection. As a result, there is frequent pedestrian traffic crossing US 1. There is no street light at that intersection, and after dark, it is difficult for motorists to see a pedestrian walking across US 1. I have handled several pedestrian accident cases that have occurred at that intersection, and poor lighting has been a contributing factor to the accidents.
Another dangerous or confusing intersection is Okeechobee Road and Midway Road near the St. Lucie County Fairgrounds. These are two major highways that intersect, and there is no traffic light at the intersection. Vehicles generally travel Okeechobee Road at high speeds, and there is a great deal of semi-truck traffic through the intersection. There was a serious school bus crash at this intersection several months ago. I successfully represented one of the parties involved in the crash. With the intersection of two major highways and a history of significant crashes, I suggest placing a traffic light at this major intersection.
US 1 and Route 60 in Vero Beach is also a confusing intersection. It is awkward making a left-hand turn onto Route 60. If you are southbound on US 1, there is a confusing process in making a left-hand or u-turn onto northbound US 1. I have never seen another intersection quite like the US 1 and Route 60 intersection.
Often times in representing injured victims, I wonder why steps were not previously taken to rectify these situations. Unfortunately, governments have sovereign immunity and many times they are immune from suit or at most have a $200,000 statutory cap on damages. If you have been involved in any motor vehicle accident, call me immediately for a free discussion about your potential case.
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