Corinth assesses busy intersection

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David Minton/DRC
The intersection of Robinson Road and Oakmont Drive in Corinth saw two accidents, including one fatality, in one recent week.
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Residents concerned after two accidents at Robinson and Oakmont

CORINTH — One intersection in Corinth is raising concerns among many who live nearby.

Residents say there are frequent “sudden stops” and tires screeching at the T-shaped intersection where Oakmont Drive dead-ends into Robinson Road.

Carrie Corbell Belokin’s backyard backs up to the busy intersection. Belokin, who has lived there for 17 years, said that since the elementary and middle schools opened down the road, morning traffic has become an issue.

“If you are on Oakmont trying to turn left onto Robinson, you have to chance it,” she said. “A power pole and curve in the street create a blind spot.”

There is no traffic control device on Robinson Road, which has the right of way at the intersection with Oakmont.

During the morning rush time on Sept. 6, motorcyclist Gary Shuffield, 57, was killed while riding eastbound in the left lane of Robinson near the intersection with Oakmont.

Police said Shuffield struck the left side of a pickup. Accident reports completed the next day show the truck, driven by a 59-year-old Corinth resident, was turning left onto Robinson from Oakmont.

Reports show the driver failed to yield the right of way at the stop sign on Oakmont.

Speed, records show, was not a contributing factor in the fatality. The speed limit in the area is 35 mph.

A few days later, on Sept. 9, another accident occurred at nearly the same location. A 22-year-old Corinth resident was taken to a Denton hospital for minor injuries after being hit by a 49-year-old Dallas resident who failed to stop at the intersection’s only stop sign before making a right turn onto Robinson, reports show.

Police Lt. Jimmie Gregg said officers believe alcohol played a contributing factor in the second accident, which occurred at night.

The 49-year-old was charged with driving while intoxicated/open container, records show.

Belokin said she hears near-misses multiple times a day, with the busiest times right before and after school. She said the biggest issue, though, is when Interstate 35E is congested.

“GPS systems direct traffic to exit State School Road to Oakmont to Swisher to [FM]2499,” Belokin said.

City officials have been feeling the heat since the two recent accidents, spurring a response issued on the city’s behalf from the Corinth Police Department.

Last week’s statement notes that numerous e-mails, calls and Facebook messages have been sent to many people throughout the city.

“Our Public Works Department will be contracting out for an independent traffic study at the location to determine what, if any, types of traffic control device(s) may be needed at the intersection,” the statement read.

Belokin said she was told by city officials that a traffic study was done at the intersection four years ago and, at the time, there wasn’t anything that needed to be done.

“[FM]2499 was not open then, and I-35[E] wasn’t as congested,” she said.

The city hasn’t provided an exact time frame for the study, but Corinth officials said the police department will be updating everyone as soon as the department has more information.

“With I-35[E] construction coming, I’m scared of what this intersection will become,” Belokin said.

MEGAN GRAY can be reached at 940-566-6885 and via Twitter at @MGrayNews.


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