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Published December 16, 2009, 08:02 AM

Some say tragic crash could have been prevented with roundabout

Moorhead, Minn. (WDAY TV) - Some say a roundabout could have prevented that tragic crash south of Moorhead. The circular inspections are a new trend in our area, sometimes met with concern and opposition. But they've been proven to reduce the number of crashes, and fatal accidents.

By: Christina Vaughn, WDAY

Moorhead, Minn. (WDAY TV) - Some say a roundabout could have prevented that tragic crash south of Moorhead. The circular inspections are a new trend in our area, sometimes met with concern and opposition. But they've been proven to reduce the number of crashes, and fatal accidents.

WDAY 6 Reporter Christina Vaughn talks with a man who survived a terrible crash three years ago on convent road. She tells us why he says a roundabout would have made a world of difference.

When Jim Shellito saw the terrible crash Tuesday afternoon, it brought back memories of his nearly identical accident three years ago.

“It happens fast, really fast, and you can't change a bit of it either. It just happens.”

81-year old Agnes Anderson was heading eastbound on convent road, and didn't stop, colliding with Jim. She didn't make it out alive. Jim broke his neck and seven ribs, spent two and a half months in the hospital, and had to go through extensive rehabilitation.

“Accidents are accidents, but it's just, terrible when you get a spot that it just seems like just keeps on right there.”

Jim says if there was a roundabout at the intersection, this never would have happened. He's not alone in his theory. Roundabouts like this one at Sheyenne and 52nd Avenue in West Fargo have kept traffic flowing, and safe.

“Forces the traffic to slow down to 15 to 25 miles per hour, when you do have crashes, they tend to be very minor in nature.”

The roundabout eliminates the t-bone accident, meaning 90 percent less fatalities.

“There are other areas in the county that could use one, which would help control traffic and help make it less dangerous hopefully.”

It's a trend Jim would like to see take-off, so not one more life is tragically lost.

“That’s going to only get worse, with all this traffic up here, if it doesn't get changed, it's going to get a lot worse.”

There are no set plans to put in more roundabouts in Cass County. Construction should start on the Highway 75 roundabout in 2011.

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