Please slow down out there

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

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

With the arrival of the new school year Thursday, there will be many more vehicles on City streets and those unmarked intersections at all hours - especially in the west part of town where the high school, football fields, Community Center, I.C. Church, Golf Course, Bacon Aquatics Center, renovated and enhanced Gillette Park and its large playground, Mental Health Institute, and major east-west thoroughfare County Road C-38 daily attract hundreds of vehicles.

In many cases, vehicles meeting at those intersections are a serious accident just waiting to happen, worsened by the fact a majority of the drivers are teenagers inexperienced behind the wheel.

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 text 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.