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'There's really no need for concern': Washington County opening roundabout with railroad crossing in the middle

Drivers in Washington County will soon have to pay extra attention to traffic flow at one of the busiest intersections in Sandersville.

SANDERSVILLE, Ga. — The busy intersection of Georgia Highway 242 and Hospital Road in Sandersville is getting a roundabout. 

Kyle Collins with the state's department of transportation says this one will be the first of its kind in the state of Georgia, it will have a railroad track that goes right through the middle of it.

"Folks really weren't abiding by the way it was laid out. They were making some turns that really weren't advised, frankly, some dangerous maneuvers," says Collins.

Before construction began, this intersection looked like this.

Credit: 13WMAZ

Kyle Collins with the Georgia Department of Transportation says they needed to do something about it and roundabouts are the safest solution. 

When asked about the railroad, Collins says, "There's really no need for concern on the railroad end. Right now, there's no guard arms, but those will be reinstalled, so you would have to stop, just like you always would when a train is coming through."

Collins says the project cost the state close to $200,000 and so far, people who live and work in the area say it's needed.

Deborah Bassaloff works at Helton Electrical Services, next to the intersection. She says the intersection is busy in the mornings and during school times.

"People couldn't tell when to stop and who's turn was next, so this kind of eliminates that," says Bassaloff.

She says in the past, speeding was also an issue.

"It's a lot better for traffic because it causes the cars to have to slow down, I'm sure you can tell, but they have no choice but to slow down because they're going in a circle," she says.

Collins says construction will continue on Monday for paving and there will be a detour until it's complete.

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