Stark County Commission wants 35 mph speed limit on section of 32nd Street
In an attempt to decrease dust complaints and increase safety on 32nd Street near Dickinson, the Stark County Commission has ordered a 35 mph speed limit on a stretch of road from the gravel pit to Highway 22.
"We're just not sure what's going to help and if this doesn't, we'll know," Commissioner Russ Hoff said.
The commissioners recognized at their meeting Tuesday at the Stark County Courthouse in Dickinson that keeping speed limits low may not be the optimal solution, but they hope it will help, at least for now.
"I was out there this morning and there must have been 10 trucks ahead of me and 10 trucks behind me and 10 getting loaded," said County Road Superintendent Al Heiser. "I visited with Fisher (Industries) about trying to get some water and maybe some magnesium (chloride), but we put (magnesium chloride) out on South Heart Road this spring and spent $30,000. With all of the rain we had, it's all gone now and we're going to have to do it again. We just can't keep up."
Commissioner Ken Zander pointed out that the only way the speed limit will help is with the presence of law enforcement on the road.
Heiser said there used to be more than 100 vehicles a day traveling on the road, a figure he estimates has increased.
"There are loaded trucks on that road and there is a housing development and cars mixed in with all of those trucks," he said. "I have had numerous complaints about the road out there, but I don't know what to do out there. We can't water every road, and we can't put dust control down on every road."
Commissioner Pete Kuntz said he was traveling on 32nd Street last week and he confirmed that the dust got so bad that he had to pull over and stop to let the dust clear.
Heiser said he hoped that with all of the truck traffic on 32nd Street, a 35 mph speed limit would lessen the dust.
"The trucks on that road probably belong to anybody who is doing work in this part of the country," he said. "I feel for the people who live on the road and I visited with Fisher and they said they will (put magnesium chloride down on the road) by the houses next week. They've done this in the past and are happy to help."
Commissioner Duane Wolf suggested the commission consider doing something more substantial to the road "because it is a haul road and it's going to continue to be a haul road for some length of time."