BENJAMIN PRIEBE The Standard
SCUGOG: Many Medd Rd. residents are concerned about speeding traffic through and around Epsom.
Erin Van Dyke, a local mother who resides on the road, gathered a petition of those who live in the area, and presented a deputation to Scugog Council on Monday, Sept. 15.
Ms. Van Dyke said that she feels the 80 Km/H speed limit on the road is too high, given the number of family homes located along the hilly stretch - as well as frequent farmer's tractors making use of the shoulder, and the Family Worship Centre churchgoers who use the road.
"I spoke to the DRPS Constable Sue Kelly about my concerns, and the fact that many drivers don't seem to follow the speed limit anyway, and she asked me to speak to Council," said Ms. Van Dyke.
Ms. Van Dyke also cited a lack of precautionary signs along the road, and predicted an increased danger during winter - when snow drifts narrow the road and make low visibility an issue.
Medd Rd. has been made popular for drivers looking to bypass traffic on Reach St., especially during this past summer's road repair and increased heavy truck traffic.
"I would like to see the speed reduced to 60 or 70 Km/H - with signs posted warning of children and pedestrians," said Ms. Van Dyke.
Scugog's newly appointed CAO and current Director of Works and Parks, Ian Roger, explained the political process of loweringspeeds on a rural road - but said it would take some time.
"The Highway Traffic Act states that a rural road is designated as an 80 Km/H zone, it is up to the local Township to decide whether the speed should be decreased," said Mr. Roger.
Mr. Roger went on the explain that Medd Rd. has just recently seen a safety audit, which did not raise any flags, due to it's low traffic volume and fair road condition.
Councillors thanked Ms. Van Dyke for her presentation, and Ward 2 Councillor John Hancock mentioned that he has heard similiar stories of speeding motorists, from those living along the nearby Scugog Line 6.
"This reminds me of the Deering sister's incident in 2004, where the Township was found to have culpability due to poor road conditions," said Councillor Hancock. "I would hate for another accident to occur, after the Township decided not to take action."
Mr. Roger notified council that the Township's Works Department could set up monitoring equipment on the stretch, which would measure traffic volumes and speeds, in order to devise their next step. Township staff will also look into guidebooks regarding traffic signs, which would urge motorists to slow down and be cautious. In the meantime, Scugog Township will speak to Cst. Kelly regarding increased police enforcement along the road, and the stance of the DRPS.