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In Lockport, an urgent call for guardrails

Put together a winding road, a steep hill and a flowing creek, and what do you have?

According to one reader, a potentially dangerous traffic situation.
The reader, who asked to remain anonymous, told Fix It the problem can be found on Route 78 (Clinton Street) as it passes over Eighteenmile Creek in the City of Lockport.

"Here is the spot that cries out for attention," she said in a letter to The Buffalo News. "There are no guardrails whatsoever to prevent a vehicle from plunging into the creek. Remember, this is no side street, this is State Route 78, and it carries a large volume of car and heavy-truck traffic 24 hours a day."
Many of the trucks that come down this steep hill carry hazardous materials, and many are tank trucks going to a local chemical company on Mill Street and to various other destinations, she said.
"There are guardrails on side streets, at Upson Park in the parking area above the intersection of Clinton and Mill and at many locations in Lockport but not where a heavily traveled state route goes over a creek at the bottom of a steep hill," she said.
After being contacted by The Buffalo News, Lockport Highway Superintendent Michael Hoffman said he would look into the matter and immediately went to the site to check it out.
After surveying the area, he said he contacted the city's engineer, who was on the road and would not be available until today. If it is determined that the guardrails are necessary, he said, the city would take the proper steps to rectify the situation.
There was some confusion initially over whether the road was the responsibility of the city or the state, since it is a truck route. But New York State Department of Transportation spokeswoman Susan Surdej said Friday that the road is considered a city street and is the city's responsibility.

Fix It is here to help get action on the small, bothersome infrastructure problems people encounter in their everyday travels. To report something that needs fixing, call the Fix It line at 849-6026, e-mail or write to Fix It c/o The Buffalo News, One News Plaza, Buffalo, NY 14203.

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