Speeds are now lower at risky crossing

What's going on with the safety measures that were supposed to be installed near the dangerous intersection at Foothill and Lone Pine roads where the motorcyclist died last fall? First we heard there were going to be speed reductions, blocked turning lanes and other changes. Then the powers said they were only reducing the speed limit. What is happening.

— Gary G. Medford

New signs reducing the speed limit on Foothill Road were installed in February above and below the site of the October fatal accident that claimed the life of Charles Sugg. County officials say they have obtained clearance to have flashing warning lights installed on Foothill as it approaches Lone Pine within the next few months. Any lane change limitations will have to wait for a planned subdivision, Gary.

Sugg, 67, died in an accident at the busy intersection while riding his motorcycle on Oct. 6, 2008. His widow, Doris Sugg, began a campaign to increase safety at the site. She was joined by Robert Hamburg, the man who was driving the truck Charles Sugg collided with.

The speed limit officially has been changed from the current "basic rule" (travel at a speed that is reasonable and prudent, not to exceed 55 mph) to 45 mph from Hillcrest Road to just north of McAndrews Road, and from 45 mph to 35 mph just north of McAndrews to 150 feet north of Eucalyptus Drive.

But plans to place "right turn only" signs on Lone Pine Road and tall flexible plastic tubes — similar to those on sections of Biddle Road — in the center line of Foothill Road at the intersection have been scrapped, at least temporarily, after area motorists complained about the proposed changes, said Jackson County Engineer Mike Kuntz.

When a planned subdivision is put in on the east side of Foothill Road, it will provide a through connection from Lone Pine to McAndrews and eliminate the "out of direction travel" for residents and then "the left-turn prohibition will be put in place," Kuntz wrote.

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