I-65 detour: two deaths and increased crashes
While the kids are back in school, and with the calendar turning to September, its important to remember that road construction season is not over. Throughout Indiana, you will still see the telltale orange barrels, lane closures and reduced speeds of active construction zones.
In the Indianapolis area, the most significant road construction is the reconstruction of the I-65 bridge over Wildcat Creek near Lafayette. This has resulted in the closure of 37-miles of interstate and miles of detours in the surrounding area.
It also has resulted in a spike in crashes that have left two motorists dead. The Indiana State Police point to driver impatience and speed as being a factor in the crashes. Troopers are reminding all drivers traveling that route that they need to plan on taking more time and slowing down.
The indystar.com website has compiled a list of six separate accidents that have occurred on the detour routes used by traffic avoiding the closed I-65. One of the injury-causing accidents was the now all too familiar scenario of a semi-truck driver failing to notice slowing traffic, resulting in a collision with another vehicle, which sent two women to the hospital.
One man died when he lost control of his car and flipped. A woman was killed when another driver was distracted by reaching for a cup of coffee. She lost control, crossed the median and crashed head-on to the other vehicle.
With thousands of vehicles detoured on these roads, the increased congestion demands every driver focus on the road and traffic conditions. This detour is not somewhere to drive on autopilot, and drivers must remain alert and aware.
Source: indystar.com, “Police cite impatience in detour deaths, wrecks,” Chris Morisse Vizza, August 18, 2015