Sheriff urges safety at new intersection on Highway 69 - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Sheriff urges safety at new intersection on Highway 69

PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - The recent opening of the eastern bypass in Paragould equals easier access to the town's two main highways.

It also means changes to another highway in the county.

Though the bypass now allows drivers to avoid the town's busiest intersection, a newly created intersection at the bypass and Highway 69 is raising concern for law enforcement officials.

"For years, there's never been a sign, a stop sign on this road, Highway 69," Greene County Sheriff David Carter said.

Now that there is, Sheriff Carter told Region 8 News that it's creating some problems.

"We have got some complaints that people have been running this stop sign."

Some Paragould residents are even taking their concerns to social media.

Jim Allensworth tweeted out: "Took the new Paragould bypass just because. 1st time on it & a tan PT Cruiser traveling south on 69 blows right through the stop sign."

"I've had a couple reports, that they've been driving down the bypass and almost got hit," Sheriff Carter said.

However, Carter said there's no excuse.

"You've really got to be not paying attention to run this stop sign," he said.

Leading up to the intersection, there are LED signs, regular signs, flags, flashing lights and warnings painted on the roadway.

They are all warnings for drivers on Highway 69 to stop because drivers on the bypass aren't going to.

Sheriff Carter said if all the signs can't get you to stop, another sort of flashing light will.

"While we've been standing here, there's been a deputy's truck go by, a state trooper and there will probably be a city officer come by soon," he said.

Sheriff Carter said these are measures put in place to keep tragedy from happening. 

The majority of the traffic traveling down the bypass is big trucks going high speeds.

"If there was a wreck here, an accident, it's gonna be bad," Sheriff Carter said.

Though the eastern bypass is now open, the western portion of the bypass is still in the planning phases.

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