Please slow down out there

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

We encourage area motorists to please slow down at unmarked, residential intersections in Cherokee.

With the arrival of summer and its longer days, and the school kids out and about at all hours, there will be many more vehicles on city streets and those unmarked intersections - especially in the west part of town where the school, Community Center, Country Club, Bacon Aquatics Center, renovated Gillette Park and its large playground, and Mental Health Institute daily attract dozens and dozens of vehicles.

All of this is exacerbated by the ongoing West Cherry Street renovation project and the many closed intersections that detours heavy traffic volume onto other streets.

In many cases, vehicles meeting at those street intersections are a serious accident just waiting to happen.

In case you weren't aware, the vehicle on the right has the right-of-way at unmarked intersections. We've witnessed countless "near misses" at these intersections because motorists just aren't paying attention, aren't driving with caution, and obviously could care less as they zip through the intersections at too high of speed with little or no regard for the safety of themselves, their passengers, and those in the other vehicles.

We applaud the Cherokee Police Department and City for utilizing the mobile speeding sign that gives motorists a digital read-out of their speed and tells them to "Slow Down!" if they exceed the posted limit. It is an effective reminder telling all of us to slow down, obey the speed limits, and avoid collisions.

And the hazardous phenomenon of motorists yakking away on cell phones and text messaging while driving - a majority of them teenagers - simply makes us shudder. We've seen too many distracted young drivers narrowly avoid serious collisions because they were holding their cell phones in one hand, or "steering" with their knee on the wheel while messaging with both hands.

Come on, area motorists, kids and adults alike. Use your head instead of your foot when traversing the streets in this fine community, and avoid very costly accidents and injuries.

Your life could depend on it.