Highway 208 needs turn lane

Topaz Ranch Estates is hardly the sleepy place it once was. The amount of traffic on Highway 208 has increased 20 percent between 1999 and 2004. According to the Nevada Department of Transportation, an average of 3,900 vehicles a day are now travelling the main route between Carson and Smith valleys.

That average does not show the full brunt of travel going through Antelope Valley on a holiday weekend, nor does it fully illustrate the dangerous mix of slower local traffic and people who have a long ways to go and are willing to exceed the speed limit to get there.

And like every other part of Douglas County, Topaz Ranch Estates is experiencing growth. With the potential development of Sleeping Elephant Ranch on the south side of the highway, there will be increased pressure on 208 to handle the load.

On May 26, longtime Topaz Ranch Estates resident Darrell David Daugherty was killed while apparently making a left turn onto Albite Road.

Had there been a turn lane at that intersection, Daugherty would not have had to stop in the middle of a major highway to make his way home.

Whatever the cause of the accident that killed Mr. Daugherty, Highway 208 will have to be improved to deal with the inevitable increase in traffic. A turn lane is a good start.


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