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New 12-year transportation plan approved for Pennsylvania

A new transportation plan in Pennsylvania will allow some major construction projects in the Chambersburg area, including a new interchange on I-81 between Swamp Fox Road and Wayne Avenue, with construction be slated to begin after 2018. Other projects identified in the 12-year plan include maintenance on I-81 towards the Maryland State line, and various other smaller improvements and maintenance on roads in the area.

These projects should improve road conditions and help prevent motor vehicle accidents by making safer roads. When investigating the aftermath of a car crash, the road design and road condition are often overlooked. While speeding, distraction and drunk driving often contribute to accidents, how a road or intersection was designed and have been maintained can increase the likelihood of a car accident.

Because roads often seem as if they have always been there, it sometimes difficult to recognize how dangerous they may be.

Narrow lanes, without shoulders and deep ditches, with sharp corners and hills that often obscure potential traffic obstructions ahead, may have been acceptable when they were first built 100 years ago, when traffic consisted of horse wagons and Model Ts. 

With today's greater traffic volume and much higher speeds, many of these roads are functionally obsolete and are literally accidents waiting to happen.

And speaking obsolete, the transportation money will also help with the replacement more than 50 bridges in the county. Narrow, undersized and worn out, many bridges throughout the state are long overdue for replacement.

Improved roads benefit all of Pennsylvania, allowing a better flow of commerce and safer transport of everyone.

Source: Chambersburg Public Opinion, "Major road improvements in store for Chambersburg area," Jim Hook, August 14, 2014

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