Residents Have Safety Concerns About Intersection Where Osage County Deputy Was Killed
News 6 - August 28, 2022 1:43 pm
OSAGE COUNTY, Okla. –
News On 6 looked into how many crashes have happened at the intersection where Osage County Captain Willy Hargraves was hit and killed on August 19.
The memorial for the captain at the intersection of U.S. Highway 60 and Oklahoma Highway 18 is a reminder of the community’s loss.
Jean Matts visited the intersection to honor her neighbor, Captain Hargraves. “He was a very, very nice guy,” said Matts. “Easy to talk to.”
The Osage County resident said she thinks Highway 18 should have a stop light instead of simply flashing lights.
“You know you’ve got to reduce your speed and everything, so I think it will save lives,” said Matts.
Pawhuska resident and Osage Nation assistant principal chief, RJ Walker, said he also wants some changes.
“You cannot see as you drive through this intersection,” said Walker. “They need to get some rumble strips out here.”
The Department of Transportation said there are already flashing lights in all four directions and advanced warning signs, and drivers are supposed to slow down to 45 miles per hour before the stop sign.
“Anytime a major incident like that happens, we’re going to reevaluate the measures that we have in the area, and we’re going to take a look at that and make sure we’re meeting all the standards that we need to,” explained TJ Gerlach, an Oklahoma Department of Transportation spokesperson.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol said that according to its latest data, between 2010 and 2020, there were 22 crashes in that intersection.
OHP said none of the crashes were deadly, two had serious injuries, eight had minor-possible injuries and 12 were non-injury crashes.
“The stats in that particular intersection don’t necessarily stand out to me to be classified as an extremely dangerous intersection,” said Lt. Mark Southall with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.
Both OHP and ODOT said residents’ concerns are validated and will be addressed as needed.
To report any problems with ODOT signs or any other concerns, call 918-838-9933.