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Guardrails proposed for Everett


A local road’s safety shortcomings led to an accident that hit close to home for one Farragut commissioner.

“I’m not sure if I’m speaking as a parent, citizen or as a member of the planning commission,” said Commissioner Ron Honken at Farragut’s Municipal Planning Commission meeting Thursday, Nov. 18.

“My oldest son, on Tuesday morning, almost lost his life on Everett Road,” he said.

His son, a student at Hardin Valley Academy, was driving to school when he encountered the sharp curve where Everett crosses under the Interstate.

Reed lost traction on wet leaves and slid off the road and down a hill. His vehicle flipped several times and landed on its roof.

“Fortunately, he wasn’t hurt. Amazingly,” Honken said.

He asked that the Town look at putting a guardrail up at the curve to prevent another accident at the spot.

“The way that road slopes, it sort of pushes you out of the curve, so it took the momentum of the vehicle ... ultimately off the road,” Honken said.

He said rescue and Sheriff’s Office personnel assured him that speed had not been a factor in the weather-related accident.


“But they did say that was a prime spot for a guardrail. And the rescue squad also recommended that the Town look at grooving the road to provide some extra traction right there,” Honken said.

“I’d just bring that up as something for the Town to consider, please,” he added.

Town Engineer Darryl Smith said he’d check to see if that part of the road was in Town limits, and then pursue a safety option there.

“We’ll find out,” Smith said.

He said rescue and Sheriff’s Office personnel assured him that speed had not been a factor in the weather-related accident.

“But they did say that was a prime spot for a guardrail. And the rescue squad also recommended the Town look at grooving the road to provide some extra traction right there,” Honken said.

“I’d just bring that up as something for the Town to consider, please,” he added.

Town engineer Darryl Smith said in an interview this week that portion of road was in Town limits, but it might not be a viable spot for a guardrail.

“There is about a 10-foot shoulder out there. Right there in the curve, they’ve got about a 10-foot flat area before the slope breaks and goes down.

“Now, it’s really steep from 10 feet off the road, and if you go off there, you’re going to the bottom,” Smith said.

“But the question that comes up is 10 feet enough room to recover. If you look at the ‘clear zone concept,’ that is barely enough room to recover, given the speed on Everett Road. So most likely, we’re not going to recommend guardrail at that location,” he said.

A guardrail is easily seen as a detriment to vehicles running off roads, Smith said, but it also can easily be seen as a detriment to vehicles that could otherwise have corrected in the clear zone.

“You can solve one problem, but you create another,” Smith said.

 

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