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Highway Safety Plan Launches in Robeson County

LUMBERTON – A task force committed to reducing traffic deaths in Robeson County kicked off the development of a safety action plan on Thursday.

The Robeson County Vision Zero task force will partner with local officials, law enforcement and state highway leaders to craft a comprehensive strategy that will, among other goals, seek to:

  • ​Reduce highway deaths and serious injuries;
  • Raise awareness of transportation safety and risks; and
  • Identify and prioritize highway safety improvement projects. 
“We welcome a fresh look at the crashes taking place in our county, and what strategies and safety projects we should pursue to save more lives,” said Grady Hunt, the task force chairman and also the area’s representative on the N.C. Board of Transportation.

Last year, 65 people lost their lives in crashes across Robeson County, according to preliminary data by the N.C. Department of Transportation’s Traffic Safety Unit. That figure compares to 66 traffic deaths countywide in 2022. Hunt established the task force in 2018 to include several local leaders.

On Thursday, members of the task force rolled up their sleeves to begin work on the plan, which will involve public outreach, input from stakeholder groups and a thorough review of crashes and other data. NCDOT’s Mobility and Safety Division will help guide the safety action plan. 

Brian Mayhew, the state traffic engineer, told the group the plan would be finalized by next year.

Rural All-Way Stops Garner Award

In other news Thursday, officials touted the successful results of installing all-way stops at 350 rural intersections, including about 30 in Robeson County since 2000. Those intersections statewide experienced a 55% decline in all types of crashes – and a 92% decrease in crashes involving deaths and severe injuries.

The department, which used a systematic approach of installing the all-way stops where they were warranted based on the crash analysis and other data, was honored with a 2023 National Roadway Safety Award for its innovative approach to highway safety.

“All-way stops are a relatively quick and efficient way to improve safety, especially at rural locations where we tend to see more crashes,” Mayhew said. “The residents of Robeson County have seen firsthand how effective this treatment is in their communities.”

The national award was presented to department officials by the Roadway Safety Foundation on Nov. 29 in Washington, D.C. People can learn more at NCDOT’s all-way stop webpage​.


1/25/2024 11:31 AM