I am writing in response to the recent News article regarding the fatal accidents on the Kensington Expressway at the Route 198 junction. It saddens me to think that in this day and age, we cannot seem to find a way to prevent such tragic accidents.
I have read that transportation officials have begun to study remedies for this problem highway. What bothers me is that after each fatality, only minor attempts are made to prevent additional accidents. I assume the "latest study" will cost the taxpayers a few hundred thousand dollars, and I don't foresee any worthwhile changes coming along.
I am not an engineer or a lawyer, just a truck driver who travels the streets and highways of Buffalo on a daily basis. I would like to offer my opinion in the interest of possibly saving someone's life.
First, reduce the speed limit in this direct area to 40 mph, and enforce it once in awhile. Believe me, word will get out. Enforcement doesn't mean an empty jeep with an electric sign. The police need to use at least two cars - one to clock the cars and one to stop them and issue tickets safely down the road. That's what police radios are for.
Second, install rumble strips across the road at the point where the speed limit is lowered. These rumble strips create vibration at high speeds and cause drivers to take notice and slow down.
Third, and I hesitate to recommend it because I use the ramp myself, close the westbound Fillmore entrance ramp. It is hazardous to enter the highway and try to merge with traffic on such a short approach. Drivers have to cross two lanes quickly in order to go downtown, all the while westbound traffic is crossing to exit on the Scajaquada.
Fourth, add some more yellow crash barrels. I see these things broken every weekend and replaced during the week, so we know cars are hitting them. With the recent fatalities involving the bridge supports, we know where the cars will hit. Why are there no crash barrels at this location? I think it's long overdue to have some crash barrels installed there.
I hope we can see these changes before we read about another tragic death.
EDWARD W. KORNOWSKI