GIRARD, Ohio (WKBN) – A major bridge construction project on Tibbetts Wick Road and State Route 11 is underway, but some say the project is creating a dangerous situation for drivers.
Michelle McMahon said the exit ramp of Route 11 south to Tibbetts Wick is the problem. She said a car came off the ramp, almost hitting her.
Drivers say they are having a tough time seeing over a four-foot cement wall to catch a glimpse of oncoming traffic over the bridge.
“You’re moving at a pretty good speed. If somebody does hit you, it’s going to be bad, and I couldn’t live with that. It scared me enough to take some action,” said Sandy Melvin.
Melvin complained two weeks ago to the Ohio Department of Transportation.
ODOT Spokesman Brent Kovacs said the project to upgrade the bridge began two months ago, and so far, ODOT has only received two complaints from drivers. Work is being completed on each side of the bridge separately, with the project expected to be finished by June of 2017. He said space is tight now, because it was important to keep the bridge partially open during the project.
When we are complete with the project, there will be six feet between the white line and the barrier wall,” he said. “Right now, with all the closures that we have on I-80… we feel that keeping the Tibbetts Wick Road open is just one way that we can help improve access to the area for motorists that otherwise have a lot of ramp closures.”
Drivers say, however, that the situation is even more stressful at night, when visibility is reduced.
“I had that problem once before, and as soon as I turned, I was like, ‘Whoa!’ Turned around the corner, ’cause I did not know the car was coming,” said Kevin Stokes.
McMahon said she is also worried about the start of school on Monday, when Liberty and Girard bus drivers will be traveling on the bridge.
“School buses are going to be coming up and down this road, and the thought of having a full school load bus of kids and that happening, who’s going to do anything about it?’ she said.