Road changes improving safety

LIMA —The growing number of roundabouts in the region is among the factors improving the area’s road safety, according to a report released Wednesday.

An annual report of crashes in the area is complete for community members to view. The Lima Allen County Regional Planning Commission released the report. LACRPC analyzes the involvement of alcohol and drug use, seatbelt usage, the conditions of roadways, the time of day and the location of crashes. Fortunately, the number of crashes is down overall.

Haunhorst said the improvements to the road by the county engineers, individual municipalities and the Ohio Department of Transportation are helping.

“Those changes do happen and they are improving things. All of the new roundabouts across the county are doing wonders for our high-crash intersections,” said Haunhorst. “We see these kinds of improvements all the time and it is important to make sure we prove to ourselves and everyone else that they are doing what they are supposed to be doing. They are making things better.”

The goal of the report is to watch for trends and use the data to improve traffic engineering in the region.

“We have completed our 2022 review of fatal crashes here in Allen County which includes Lima as well,” said Adam Haunhorst, planning engineer for LACRPC. “We are down from last year. From the mid-20s down to 15 last year. It is still too many. We always have a goal of zero. Only four of that 15 involved alcohol and drugs. We only had two different pedestrian or non-motorized fatalities. Nine of the 15 people lost their lives for not wearing safety equipment so please wear your seatbelt and your helmet. Keep yourselves safe on the roads.”

Haunhorst said the report is completed every year. He also said the organization uses the data to help identify problem locations.

“We keep track because in order to look at something in an actual trend we need to be able to compare it historically and over the long term,” said Haunhorst. “We need to see where things are happening. How often. What are our trends and where we are going? That is the only way we can make real improvements that are based on long-term data and not a knee-jerk reaction.”

Reach Precious Grundy at 567-242-0351.