Changes ranging from parking restrictions to improved reflective markers are planned for Dulaney Valley Road following a safety study requested by state Del. Susan Aumann (R-42) and performed by the State Highway Administration.
Aumann, who represents the Timonium and Towson areas in District 42, requested the study following complaints from residents living along the MD-146 roadway. Residents have said that more need to be done to curb poor driving decisions, which have led to fatalities, crashes and property damage, among other issues. (Continue reading below for a crash history of Dulaney Valley Road.)
Aumann, SHA representatives and community members walked along the roadway in November. The two-week safety study, which focused on a one-mile stretch of Dulaney Valley Road in Timonium, was performed shortly after residents brought it to Aumann's attention. The results of the study were recently released.
The changes are scheduled to take effect between now and next spring, according to details in a letter sent to community leaders and Aumann from SHA.
“I hope with all these measures that we won’t have any fatalities or anyone being harmed," Aumann told Patch Friday afternoon. "I’m really happy with the response of SHA. I think they did a really nice job, spending time on a community issue that warranted attention.”
Each change or improvement is meant to increase visibility or promote safer driving habits.
- "No Parking" signs will be installed near the Chapel Wood Lane intersection to improve driver visibility around potentially dangerous curves. There are currently no restrictions on parking.
- New guardrail reflectors will be installed.
- Improved reflective striping.
“[The striping] is satisfactory now, but they feel, because of all the incidents that have happened, they’re going to push the calendar up and have it re-striped,” Aumann said.
- The white shoulder lines will be made wider, from 5 to 10 inches. The purpose is make travel lanes appear more narrow and slow down traffic by giving the impression of a narrower roadway.
“That will give the perception that the road is a little bit narrow so it will help behavior modification to slow down traffic. ... Some of the curves can be quite blinding when you’re coming around,” Aumann said.
- Improved lighting in more densely residential areas.
- Increased police presence to curb speeders.
The 40 mph speed limit will remain the same after results showed drivers stayed mostly within an appropriate speed range.
“I’m grateful that something is being done and hope that people will modify behavior in their driving to be safer,” Aumann said.
Results from the 3 1/2-year period studied—Jan. 2008 to June 30, 2011—showed that there were 30 crashes reported on Dulaney Valley Road, according to a letter sent to community leaders from the State Highway Administration.
By the numbers:
- Thirty crashes were reported, with no fatalities.
- Fifteen of the crashes (50 percent) took place at intersections, and were predominantly rear-end type collisions.
- Alcohol played a factor in two of the crashes.
- Six crashes involved a car veering off the road.
“Sometimes the surface conditions might be a little bit iffy, but they didn’t find them to be out of the ordinary for statewide averages,” Aumann said.
Editor's Note: The man featured in the attached video is commenting on the chronic safety issues of Dulaney Valley Road following an accident in which a driver died. Police reported that the driver—operating a stolen Honda Accord—attempted to illegally pass another vehicle while fleeing police, which caused the accident.