Truck traffic, speeders are M’boro concerns

Published 5:05 pm Sunday, May 17, 2015

MURFREESBORO – One lives on the “main drag”, while the other resides on a street at least a mile from the major thoroughfare.

But both share the same problem with traffic.

At the recent meeting of the Murfreesboro Town Council, Teresa Flanagan and Shelly Mayle respectively informed their elected leaders of the individual problems they were experiencing.

Flanagan, who co-owns The Flanagan House Bed and Breakfast on Main Street, expressed her concerns about truck traffic on the town’s busiest road. She was most concerned about the number of logging trucks using Main Street.

“They start about 4 o’clock in the morning, and, yes, I’m up at that time,” she said. “They are speeding through our town and something has to be done before someone gets hurt.”

Flanagan said she takes her grandson for walks nearly everyday along Main Street.

“These trucks are not stopping and eating at our establishments; they’re not stopping and fueling up at our establishments,” she noted. “I don’t know about you guys, but I don’t need any logs. Something needs to be done to keep them off our Main Street. We have the (US 158/258) bypass for a reason and that’s where they need to stay.”

Murfreesboro Mayor John Hinton said he’s spoken with North Carolina DOT about the same issue Flanagan addressed.

“I guess we need to start my enforcing the speed limit,” Hinton stated. “It is a state highway so I feel we’ll have a hard time keeping the trucks off Main Street.”

For Mayle, she and her family reside on Harrell Street. She had addressed the Murfreesboro Council two years ago about the same problem – speeding and child safety issues.

“Those problems continue,” Mayle remarked. “There are seven children living on that little street and there are two blind spots and there are a lot of people that are flying through there.”

Mayle stressed that she wasn’t blaming the Murfreesboro Police Department due to speed continuing to be a problem.

“They can’t sit on my street 24/7,” she stated. “The last time I was here we talked about cul-de-sacing the street, but I’m not here tonight to ask for that. I’m asking you to please put speed bumps on that street before a child gets killed.”

Mayle said Harrell Street was a popular route for those using the Jenkins Center (part of Chowan University, but located just off campus).

Hinton said there was previous discussion about re-establishing a cul-de-sac at the north end of Harrell Street, but an issue arose with the Murfreesboro Fire Department (concerning access to that thru street).

“I would love to see speed bumps on that street,” said Murfreesboro Police Chief Darrell Rowe.

Attorney Buddy Jones, who serves as legal counsel to Murfreesboro local government, said he was not aware of any legal impediments to having speed bumps installed, although it was later discussed that those traffic-control devices need to be the correct height and width in order not to cause damage to a vehicle.

“It will cost a lot more for a family who loses a child than it will to someone who damages a car (crossing a speed bump),” Mayle said.

After a brief discussion, Town Council members agreed to study the costs of either re-establishing a cul-de-sac or installing speed bumps on Harrell Street.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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