Committee wants safer roads

LaGRANGE – With county finances under review for both the annual budget and a pay study, it may be a little while before a request for a new deputy can come up for a vote. That doesn’t mean county employees are going to sit back and wait for the roads to get safer in the meantime.

The Troup County Board of Commissioners received its first update from the newly formed Highway Safety committee at its regular work session on Friday. The committee is made up of Sheriff James Woodruff, County Manager Tod Tentler, Fire Chief Dennis Knight and Georgia State Patrol Sgt. Maurice Raines who met recently to discuss road safety within the county and identified several problems and worked on solutions as a team.

“Last month we had 140 wrecks that the state patrol worked in Troup County,” said Tentler. “Eighty percent of those were distracted drivers, so if we could just get people off texting on their cell phone or talking on their cell phone, we could reduce a lot of those wrecks.”

The sheriff further emphasized the point.

“When you are texting, (and) you take your eyes off the road for two seconds going 60 or 70 miles per hour, you will have traveled about 144 yards,” said Woodruff. “…And it is just like having blinders on when you are not looking, so you would never drive with blinders, but you will take a chance texting or putting on makeup or reaching for your phone when you drop it on the floor, instead of just pulling over, taking care of your business and going about your way.”

The goal of the group is to both make county roads safer and better manage available county resources to the benefit of Troup County citizens.

The group also identified ways that they could work together to save the county money through better communication between the different groups.

The Troup County Board of Commissioners is scheduled to meet Tuesday at 9 a.m. at 100 Ridley Ave.

 

Reach Alicia B. Hill at alicia.hill@lagrangenews.com or at 706-884-7311, Ext.2154.