Jones County drivers are waiting on a decision about a possible solution to what many consider a deadly stretch of road. The Georgia Department of Transportation proposed installing a roundabout where the new Gray bypass meets the Eatonton Highway.
Some people in Jones County are still wary about traveling on the Gray Bypass. “It really hasn't helped that much I never use it. Never,” said Cody Holt. “I don't like it, because of all the deaths and stuff,” said Corey Holt.
After three deaths and five car wrecks since December, some people are still worried about the highway's safety. “It's been dangerous. What about the ones that haven’t been reported?” said Cody Holt. “What about all of the almost accidents?”
To cut down on traffic accidents, GDOT wants to turn this four-way intersection into a roundabout. “They should do that I think it will help,” said Corey Holt. “It’s really a mess,” said Cody Holt. “It's really a mess if you ask me.”
Early Thursday morning, 13WMAZ talked to 15 people here in Jones County about whether or not a roundabout is the solution to make the bypass safer. Two people told her yes they believe a roundabout will help. Thirteen people told her no they believe a traffic light should be here instead. “That's a four way intersection and I think they're going to have a problem with that,” said Cody Holt.
The state Department of Transportation says if Jones County Commissioners approves the roundabout... it will take about 3 months to build it.
Some folks in Jones County say it could also take a while for people to learn how to use it. “The only one out here that I know of is over there in Eatonton,” said Cody Holt. “So there's not many places that you can even practice around.”
But so far most people agree on one thing. People want an intersection that's safe. “I think they need to figure something out quick,” said Cody Holt.
Jones County Sheriff Butch Reece says at first he preferred to have a traffic light at the intersection as well. But after speaking with GDOT, he says the intersection does not have enough traffic to qualify for lights. Sheriff Reece says right now a roundabout is the safest option.