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Councilman Expresses Concern About Intersection

Lower Saucon Township Councilman Ron Horiszny asked Aug. 15 if anything can be done to help slow down motorists at the intersection of Black River and Bingen roads.

Safety at a well-traveled 'T-intersection' in Lower Saucon Township is concerning to a township councilman.

At council's Aug. 15 meeting, Ron Horiszny said the intersection of Black River and Bingen roads has been the scene of several accidents recently.

Horiszny said "excessive speeds" are related to some of the problems at the intersection, where eastbound motorists on Black River Road are required to stop and yield to north- or southbound motorists on Bingen Road.

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Police also reported in May that an Upper Saucon motorist would be cited for a stop sign violation for an accident she allegedly caused as she turned from Black River Road onto Bingen.

Police said that accident occurred when Patricia Graf proceeded forward to turn left and struck a vehicle that was turning from Bingen onto Black River.

Horiszny asked if the township's public works department could take a look at the intersection to determine if anything can be done to help make it safer.

charles hampton August 24, 2012 at 10:45 AM
Yes, it's often an adventure, turning left on to Bingen Rd. from Black River. I'm not a fan of caution lights, but it may be the only way to slow down the traffic on Bingen Rd.
Deb August 24, 2012 at 12:31 PM
How about if we try to slow down the traffice on Black River from Old Philly Pike. It is sometimes like the speedway as fast as everyone races up and down. There are alot of kids and adults who like to walk but the way everyone drives you take your life in hands on there.
Andrew Wilt August 24, 2012 at 12:45 PM
There is absolutely no need for any additional traffic control devices at the intersection of Bingen Road and Black River Road other than the stop sign and markings that are already there. I have gone through that intersection at least twice every day for the past five years or more and have never seen an accident there. With respect to the accidents cited in the article, would a traffic signal have done anything for the driver who was alleged to be drunk? No, drunk is drunk. The woman who apparently was turning left to go north on Bingen Road would have hit the automobile turning left onto Black River Road whether she was under a blinking traffic light or not as she simply was not looking when she made the turn. Traffic signals don’t help drivers use their heads. A traffic signal at that intersection will be another unnecessary cost to taxpayers. People are going to make mistakes, they’re human, you can’t fix every intersection so accidents will cease. If something absolutely must be done to placate the over concerned, it wouldn’t hurt to trim back the trees and underbrush on Bingen Road south of the intersection so eastbound drivers on Black River Road could see farther up Bingen.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 01:12 PM
I disagree, although I too have never witnessed an accident there. However a three way stop would be idea. It would keep the speeding drivers, the motorcycles who come off of Applechurch road for a not stop flyby and the tractor trailers who are now taking short cuts through this area instead of using the highway. I think that the tractor trailers should be banned from a rural area such as this.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 01:15 PM
Sorry, it would keep all of the above off the roads or force them to slow down. I live on West Point Drive and if I am heading north on Bingen and slow down for my turn using my turn signal, I have some pretty close calls of being hit from the rear by people who are driving too fast.
Andrew Wilt August 24, 2012 at 01:22 PM
Mary Ann Looby - It ain't broke, it shouldn't be fixed! Stop signs on Bingen Road at that intersection would be a disaster! As far as the tractor trailers are concerned, I don't think there are very many that use those roads except when there has been a major accident somewhere and the trucks, along with hundreds of cars, are rerouted to smaller area roads.
Angela Pozza August 24, 2012 at 01:27 PM
I completely agree with you, Andrew - that's exactly my response as well.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 01:31 PM
@Andrew Wilt, do you live along Bingen Road? I live just off it and I am home all day. I see the tractor trailers, I see and hear the freakin motor cycles, especially on the weekend. A three way stop will get these noise makers out of the area and the folks who "short cut" through to get to 309 and vicinity will think twice. I do think that any full time residents of this are would oppose the stop signs, we all want the peaceful area we signed on for. I deal with Hickory hill behind my home and that is just as bad. Trucks, motorcyles speeding cars, no wonder there are so many dead dear along the road side.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 01:33 PM
CORRECTION I dont think any full time residents
Angela Pozza August 24, 2012 at 01:34 PM
And Mary Anne - I think a three way stop would be a terrible idea there. The traffic needs to keep moving on Bingen Rd ( I drive it at least 2 times a day if not more ). A stop sign there would just jam everything up. There's much more traffic on Bingen than is coming from Black River (usually 2-3 cars lined up if any). Those drivers just need to be more careful turning there and maybe trim the trees so they can see better pulling out, that's all. You can't fix bad drivers with more signals.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 01:38 PM
Angela you are right when you say there is much more traffic coming from Bingen. The stop signs would be a detriment to "non locals" using Bingen as a quick cut through. Do you live in this area? If you do, how could you not prefer less traffic????
Saucon Lady August 24, 2012 at 01:39 PM
I was involved in an accident at that intersection when a driver on Black River Road failed to see the stop sign and just took a fast left turn onto Bingen. I was southbound On Bingen and fortunately was able get avoid being broadsided, but did suffer substantial damage to my vehicle and injuries to my knees. I think a flashing light would be helpful. At certain times of year there is a lot of traffic involving drivers unfamiliar with the are; Eagles Camp, Graduatuon and Prom season.....young drivers With a lot of distractions. Speed along Bingen Road doesn't help either!
Angela Pozza August 24, 2012 at 02:01 PM
I live in Hellertown - I'm not sure that it would really deter people though, since there really aren't many options for getting from say 378 to Hellertown besides 78 which is basically going to be out of commission for the next few years at the Hellertown interchange due to the construction. We can't keep trying to keep cut-through traffic off of every road in lower saucon. It just is what it is - it's happening everywhere. There are more people in the area, so more traffic. If people in the area want to live in a place with less traffic, they should maybe live in a closed subdivision with cul-de-sacs so there's no excess traffic...
Andrew Wilt August 24, 2012 at 02:08 PM
Mary Anne Looby - I lived on Bingen Road itself for three years. I lived just off of Bingen Road for 10 years after that and have driven through that intersection thousands of times. As a practical matter, if dollars are going to be spent on a dangerous intersection in the township, I would suggest those dollars be spent at the intersection of Meadows Road, Springtown Hill Road, and Leithsville Road (Route 412). I have witnessed many accidents there including some very serious ones. Once I even directed traffic for 10 minutes because a rush hour accident tied up the roads so badly it took that long for the police to arrive. Finally, again, accidents will happen. You can't legislate or engineer perfect automobile use into humans. But there is a solution! If we ban trucks and automobiles (and motorcycles) from the township roads altogether there will be no accidents! We will live in quiet tranquility and harmony...until people start whining about road rash from all the bicycle crashes!
Stephanie Brown August 24, 2012 at 03:06 PM
Penn Dot made the intersection worse within the last ten years when it removed the concrete island on Black River Road prior to the intersection. On that island was a stop sign. Now the only stop for that intersection on Black River is way off to the side in the right turn lane for Black River. Since the stop sign is so far over, most drivers turning left do not see it. I brought this to the attention of Lower Saucon Township Counciln a few years ago and they decided not to pursue contacting Penn Dot. I suggested large stop signs across from the intersection facing Black River Road. There should be no cost to the township as Black River Road is a State Road. A fix to the problem at the intersection of Meadows Rd, Springtown Hill Rd and 412 is a traffic Light at Apples Church Road on 412. As there is no safe way for traffic from that part of the township to access 412. And alot of traffic comes out of Upper Saucon and out of Buck County form there and also out of Bingen.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 06:33 PM
Angela, I appreciate your comments, but unless you live here you have no idea what it is like. Local traffic does not bother me at all, it's the people who are always speeding because they are late for some unknown important date.LST residents know enough not to drink and drive, our police force will always get you. As far as coming from 378 to Hellertown, they could come off of 378 at Passer road and go straight through to Apple Church. There is no better or straighter way to get there. I have lived here as an adult for more than 20 years and have seen traffic become awful, not because of the Eagles Camp, or Graduations at Stabler, that stuff is one time a year.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 06:38 PM
Andrew, don't quit your day job, funny you aren"t. I am not suggesting banning traffic. I am suggesting a three way stop which will make motorist aware, truckers beware, and motorcyclists go eleswhere! Peace and quiet would be wonderful!
Andrew Wilt August 24, 2012 at 06:51 PM
Mary Ann Looby - OK, all humor aside, is it actually your belief that making the intersection of Bingen Road and Black River Road a three way stop will deter motorcyclists from using Bingen Road?
Angela Pozza August 24, 2012 at 07:23 PM
If you're coming from near the Promenade and going to the north end of Hellertown, that way doesn't really work too well. Maybe you should move if it's that bad? I really don't think people are going to stop driving through there anytime soon, it's just the way it is and a lot of people do have places that they need to get to in some time frame (I'm not saying it's okay to do mach 9 through there but it is frustrating to have to drive through there for work and have people doing well UNDER the speed limit because they have nothing better to do than head over to the Country Club on Saucon Valley.) Just my thoughts - I don't really care all that much - put whatever you want at that intersection, I still don't think it will deter traffic.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 09:16 PM
@Andrew Wilt, I do think it is a possibity. As someone who travels that way multiple times a day, I would have no objection to a three way stop. @Angela, if you're coming from the Promenade and going to the north end of Hellertown, why wouldn't you stay on 378 until you reached Seidersville Road? Do you know what the speed limit is on Bingen Road? I also think you comment that the people heading to SVCC have nothing better to do is rude and also very telling. You apparently are still of the mindset of many years ago when this area was considered the have and the have nots. That mentality is long gone for most of us who have lived here 20 years or less. Bethlehem Steel is long gone, as is their hold on the area. In addition many of those people have earned the right to spend their retirement and free time, any way they want. If driving at a safe speed works for them, it should work for all of us. There are kids, walkers and bike riders on Bingen Road.. You never know when you will come upon one of them.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 09:18 PM
Not to mention the tons of deer!!!!!!!!!!!!
Angela Pozza August 24, 2012 at 11:07 PM
Anddd this is why I don't comment on these things hardly ever. I have better things to do, like work my 3 jobs. Enjoy arguing over such ridiculous things and going to the country club. There are more important things in life. Maybe I'll see you as I drive through there as a non-resident everyday. And yes I do know the speed limit - I'm married to a cop and work in emergency services - thanks.
Mary Anne Looby August 24, 2012 at 11:43 PM
It is really frustrating when someone's comments are questioned and they get all in a huff. Angela, by your own words you live in Hellertown. You cannot know the day to day trafic on Bingen Road, it is physically impossible, just as it would be impossible for me to know what the traffic is on your street. I wonder how you would feel if people were flying by your home on motorcycles, or your baby was awakened by the rumbling of a tractor trailer? You are entitiled, as is everyone, to have an opinion regaarding the intersection, however I do not think you are qualified to speak to what it like to listen to the traffic. Right now I can hear some idiots stereo bass thrumping into the evening air.

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