By Cassandra Ivy, The Voice News - May 31, 2018
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Is anyone else enjoying that the weather has finally reached summer-like temperatures? I know just a few weeks ago, it seemed all of us were awaiting more consistent temps, so the outdoors could be enjoyed without moving quickly from building to building or without throwing on an extra layer of clothing or jackets.
It appears from the filled campgrounds and hustle and bustle on the roads that locals are really starting to take advantage of the sunshine, even without the holiday weekend traffic we celebrated just a few days ago.
But I want to take a moment to remind those of the importance of paying attention to the roads throughout this summer – and really year ‘round. We all know that with the growth this area has had, paved roads and shoulders in many areas are still in need of being improved and added onto. And some of those projects are in the works to be addressed much sooner than later – if timelines hold up to what we’ve been told.
But in the meantime, we also all know that summertime often equals much more travel even on our local roads. Travel by teens who are still learning to drive, during hours they’d usually be in school, as they go to activities and jobs. Travel by cyclists, both motorized and human-energized, who like to travel the same roads as larger vehicles. Travel by residents not familiar to our area, as they check out the lakes and recreational spots our region offers.
So please be on the lookout. Put down the phones, and give your full attention to your main job at hand when you’re behind the wheel – which is to get to and from your location safely.
And cyclists, please be aware of where you’re riding. I have had many instances of driving just west of Sprague on the hills and have seen vehicles come up on unexpected cyclists in the road in an area where shoulders do not really exist. I have seen the same on 68th Street north and south of Hickman and along other stretches in this area in the time I have lived here.
And in several of those instances, vehicles have had to swerve to barely miss those riders who were out for their daily exercise or stroll, and in a couple instances especially near Sprague they about caused an accident with an oncoming vehicle heading the opposite direction.
While I know the appeal and ease may be to navigate the highways, keep in mind some of the trails that are in the area may be a bit safer.
At the end of the day, we want to see our roads safe. And whether shoulders are added and lanes are widened right away or not, we need to make sure we’re all doing our parts to make it as safe as possible.
We want you to enjoy the summertime sunsets, and not have to worry about the accidents that we sometimes have the unfortunate duty to cover. So let’s all work to do our part to ensure minimal accidents occur.
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