Drivers, merchants want turn signal for dangerous intersection

By Nikki

JAMES ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV)It's an intersection some say is costing merchants money and others say is threatening lives.

The people who travel the intersection of Maybank Highway and Wappoo Creek think{} something needs to be done to make it safer.

Some of the local business owners adjacent to the intersection have already started a petition. In just two weeks, they already have one thousand signatures.

On Monday, commissioners for the James Island Public Service District addressed their concerns during a meeting. They said they are aware of the problem and are doing everything thing they can to fix it before someone loses their life.

"We use the bank across the shopping center and just coming and going from the bank on a daily basis is pretty scary," said Brett Epps, the store operator for the James Island Piggly Wiggly.

Epps said the intersection is driving shoppers away from businesses near Maybank Highway and Wappoo Creek.

"During heavy peak traffic hours, they do try to avoid the shopping center," Epps said.

Commissioner June Waring is leading the push for a turn signal.

"I think it'll be a matter of time before somebody gets really hurt," she said. "It'll have no effect on speeding up the traffic or slowing it down, but it will just simply give people the opportunity to turn safely."

Waring said throughout the last few years there have been nearly 40 traffic collisions already.

"The biggest problem I notice is having to sit there forever and finally you just say, 'I'm not going to sit here because the green is never coming for me.' These cars are always going to going and you just dart," Waring said.

A piece of land sits near the intersection, which will soon be developed into new homes, according to Waring.

"It's going to hold up and cause just double the problem," she said.

Waring said this week, the commission will send letters to elected officials in Charleston County, the town of James Island, and the city of Charleston, asking for help in making the intersection more safe.

"We're working as a team to get this project done," Waring said.

She said in early September, the commission will also meet with Mayor Joe Riley.

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