Something city leaders say was a life saver is now gone. A truck hit the only traffic beacon in Hickman a few weeks ago.
The beacon used to be at the intersection of Kentucky 94 and 125, but the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet said rebuilding the beacon wouldn't meet current standards, so they removed it to keep it from being a hazard.
Whether another beacon would be worthwhile at the intersection, the cabinet will be conducting traffic studies. But city leaders say not having a light could cause even more safety concerns.
Tracy Eddington saw it all unfold. She says she generally spends time on the porch in good weather and saw the truck hit the only traffic beacon in town.
"It hit the one side, but it took them a while to take it down," she said.
The traffic beacon used to be suspended in the middle of this intersection. It would flash red on KY 94 and flash caution down the hill on KY125.
Hickman City Manager Johnny McTurner says the 50-year-old beacon saves lives.
"Unless we have a caution light safety, something, I think we're going to have a lot more accidents in that area," McTurner says.
He says natives know about the blind spot on the hill, but the concern is reminding them and providing a caution light for those out-of-town drivers. McTurner says it would be unfortunate to spend time on a traffic study just to come to the conclusion the beacon needs to be reinstalled. He says everybody knows the intersection needs an alert.
The cabinet estimates a new beacon would cost $15,000 to replace. The city paid the electric bill on the old beacon, and say they're happy to continue paying it if the beacon is replaced.
The Transportation Cabinet can't release the information on when the traffic study will be completed for fear it would affect the way people drive.
About 1,700 vehicles pass through the intersection in an average day.
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