Truck-tipping signs to be added to dangerous Cambridge intersection after crash

The driver of a tractor-trailer loaded with pulp wood lost control of his vehicle on this curve in Cambridge in August 2011, sending both the truck and the logs into the Cambridge General Store.
Diana Bowley | BDN
The driver of a tractor-trailer loaded with pulp wood lost control of his vehicle on this curve in Cambridge in August 2011, sending both the truck and the logs into the Cambridge General Store.
By Alex Barber, BDN Staff
Posted Dec. 11, 2011, at 12:26 p.m.

CAMBRIDGE, Maine — In response to a tractor-trailer tipping over and crashing into a store near a dangerous curve in August, the Maine Department of Transportation will place truck-tipping signs at the intersection of Routes 150 and 152.

DOT spokesman Ted Talbot said the signs will be in place within a week and a half.

“Something needed to be done in the way of warning drivers,” said Talbot.

A truck loaded with logs tipped over while rounding the curve and crashed into the Cambridge General Store on Aug. 23. Two other vehicles were damaged in the crash.

The driver, John Watson, 51, of Solon, told Somerset County Deputy Sheriff Don Avery that the intersection sneaked up on him in the early morning fog.

“With them putting the signs up, it’s going to be great,” said Brenda DiMeo, one of the owners of the Cambridge General Store. “It’s just that little extra to remind people that it is a dangerous corner. I’m glad they’re doing that.”

Talbot said tipping signs get truckers’ attention.

“Truckers tend to recognize those. Not only recognize, but also adhere to them,” said Talbot.

DiMeo said truckers and other motorists have been mindful of the intersection and can’t recall any other incidents since the August crash.

“They’ve been a lot better since the accident. I think it woke them up a little bit and they’re more cautious of their driving,” said DiMeo.

It took a month and a half after the crash before the store was back up and running like normal, she said. The owners got the cooler fixed only two weeks ago.

“Nobody was hurt, which is the biggest thing for me. My family was safe, the driver was safe. Material things can be fixed,” said DiMeo.

Talbot said the tipping signs might have gone up sooner, but signs in schools zones in that region take priority.

“Quite frankly, in school zones, we want to get to those sooner than later, especially when school is in session,” said Talbot.

He didn’t rule out that more may be done to improve the safety of that intersection.

“[We may] even put in a blinking light, not sure if that will happen,” said Talbot. “We’re even entertaining the use of guardrails. [Our region manager] may well secure the funds to get the guardrails there.”

http://bangordailynews.com/2011/12/11/news/mid-maine/truck-tipping-signs-to-be-added-to-dangerous-cambridge-intersection/ printed on December 21, 2014