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Dangerous rural road sees three major accidents in one month

By Dana Clemens, Reporter, dana.clemens@kmiz.com
Published On: Dec 02 2013 06:39:50 PM CST
Updated On: Dec 02 2013 06:48:04 PM CST
HARRISBURG, Mo. -

From Hallsville to Harrisburg, three major accidents happened on Highway 124 within the last month.

On average, this dangerous rural road sees 47.5 wrecks per year in the last three years, with an average of one fatality.

A grain truck rolled over Monday morning near Harrisburg.

Five days before that, a head-on collision occurred that left two dead.

And less than a month before that, a pick-up truck ran off the road into the trees and burst into flames.

Residents that live on the road tell ABC 17 News this highway is especially dangerous because of drivers.

"People are crazy drivers, they speed, and they pass me over double yellow lines," resident Rebecca Davis said.

But Gale Blomenkamp with the Boone County Fire Protection District said the problems on the road start with the road conditions.

"You have very little room for error driving on rural highways," Blomenkamp said.

That's because many of these rural highways lack shoulders.

"We see people fall off the right-hand side of the 6-inch drop, and then they overcorrect trying to get back on the road," Blomenkamp said. "Once they overcorrect, it shoots them over to the other side of the highway and into the ditch."

Blomenkamp said if you drive off the side of the road a little, slow down and stay where you are.  Once you are almost stopped, you can slowly get back on to the road.

That lack of shoulder is only one of the problems of rural highways.  There are also many blind curves, a lack of guardrails, and wild animals such as deer.

Blomenkamp said these dangerous conditions only get worse as the winter weather comes.

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