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Parishioners push for road safety

It’s taken three years, but Mary Sims finally feels like her voice is being heard.

The treasurer of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Yellow Springs has been an advocate for signage changes along the busy stretch of U.S. 68 where the church is located. It sits right on the corner of the Snively Road intersection.

The problem is, most drivers don’t know that.

“When people are pulling in or out of this parking area or Snively Road over there where the houses are, it can become concerning because the people passing don’t see it,” Sims said. “This is a very long, straight stretch and people coming down the hill are very apt to pass.”

Within just 10 minutes of standing at the intersection of the two-lane road last week talking with Sims, two cars passed others by using the oncoming lane of traffic, possibly endangering anyone trying to turn onto U.S. 68.

After one of the church’s patrons was struck while turning, its 70 members began writing letters to the Greene County Engineer’s Office and the Ohio Department of Transportation advocating for a “no passing” sign to be placed there. Last month, they received a response from the state that their concerns would be rectified, Sims said.

ODOT confirmed it will place a yellow intersection sign to alert southbound drivers of the upcoming intersection. It will also include the words “Snively Road” so motorists are aware of the roadway ahead. It should take about two months to place the new sign, the state said.

It’s uplifting, Sims said, to know the concerns shared by church members have been recognized. The congregation has been in Yellow Springs for 55 years — 50 of which have been along U.S. 68 — so Sims said it’s good to know they’re making a difference beyond their doors.

“I just hope people don’t pass on this stretch (and) don’t exceed the speed limit,” she said.

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