Drivers sign petition for change at Cherokee Co. intersection


CHEROKEE CO., S.C. (WSPA) – An intersection in Cherokee County has some drivers so worried, they’ve started a petition to get some changes made.

A fiery crash happened at the crossing of Highway 105 and East Junior High Road in Gaffney on Tuesday.

7 News spoke to drivers about what they’d like to see done to prevent accidents like this from continuing to happen.

“If you live in Gaffney, you pretty much know exactly where this intersection is and you know that it’s horrible,” Krystle Jackson said.

The intersection of Highway 105 and East Junior High Road sees a lot of traffic, and many drivers believe it’s one of the most dangerous crossings in the county, saying two stop signs with flashing lights aren’t enough.

“In the mornings, if you’re going up 105 toward Draytonville, you do have the sun in your eyes–especially this time of year–and that makes it even harder on people,” Jackson said.

The intersection is especially congested in the mornings and afternoons as parents are dropping off and picking up their kids from Ewing Middle School right down the road.

“I have to take my son to school by 7:20, because if I don’t, when I come back through this intersection, it is a total and complete disaster area,” Jackson said.

Krystle Jackson is one of several parents who reached out to 7 News after a fiery crash happened at the intersection Tuesday morning. But Jackson said this crash wasn’t the first one she’s witnessed.

In fact, Gaffney Police Chief Chris Skinner told 7 News his wife was in a bad wreck at the same intersection.

“I have, just this year, had to turn around while going home and go the long way home because there’s been a wreck here. Three times,” Jackson said.

Another parent who witnessed the most recent crash started a petition in hopes of getting a red light at the intersection after she said she realized children were inside the burning car. Luckily, no one was hurt.

“It makes me cry. I literally went home, after I found out there were three kids in that car and I heard that one was pretty young, I went home and I laid down in my bed and I just bawled,” Jackson said. “Had we been running just a few minutes later than normal, it could’ve been us.”

The petition got close to 600 signatures in less than 24 hours.

“A red light needed to be there 20 or 30 years ago,” Jackson said. “My mom will tell you, when she went to Ewing, back when it was East Junior High, it needed a red light then.”

Other drivers told 7 News, instead of a traffic light at the intersection, they’d like to see a traffic guard on duty during the hours that students are being dropped off or picked up from school.

The South Carolina Department of Transportation said they reviewed this particular intersection last year and decided it didn’t warrant a light. However, after recent requests, they’re going to review the intersection again.

They told 7 News they evaluate and make their decisions based on the volume of traffic and number of crashes. They also take into consideration the circumstances and cause of each crash.

7 News reached out to the South Carolina Highway Patrol to see exactly how many accidents have happened at the intersection this year, but we’re still waiting to hear back.

If you have an issue with a road in your area, SCDOT officials say you can go to the contact portion of their website and put in a request.

Instead of multiple people filing requests on the same issue, they ask that you have a spokesperson. They say that will help make it an easier and quicker process for them to respond.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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