Roundabout coming to Centerville |

Roundabout coming to Centerville

Only a few hours after the Centerville intersection was the scene of last week’s tragic collision that claimed the lives of a Gardnerville woman and her great-granddaughter, the state announced a compact roundabout was approved for the site.

That makes the second such roundabout on Highway 88, the other is located at County Road and serves the high school and the Carson Valley Swim Center.

We had serious reservations in 2006 when the state insisted that a roundabout was a better solution to that intersection than a traffic signal.

In the 11 years since the installation of that first roundabout, there hasn’t been a single fatal collision there.

During the same period of time, there have been five deaths at the Centerville intersection.

There has also been a fatal collision at Highway 88 and Mottsville, that occurred the day the traffic light was disabled by another wreck.

While roundabouts may be trickier than traffic signals, they don’t rely on electricity to work. Traffic will have to slow down at that site, which alone may reduce the fatalities there.

It’s not the number of collisions that’s concerning, but their severity. Three deaths in 10 months at a single Carson Valley intersection is by far too many.

It will be next summer before the roundabout is installed, so motorists still have to brave that intersection through the winter. All we can advise is patience and vigilance, and a willingness to slow down, to preserve lives there.