INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Every year, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the Marion County Sheriff’s Department investigate nearly 30,000 vehicle crashes. Officers have been called to some intersections in the metro area more often than others.
When determining the most dangerous destinations in town, IMPD Crash Coordinator Sgt. Doug Heustis explained that it’s a matter of popularity; the more people, the more problems.
“To have a high volume of traffic crashes you need basically a high volume of traffic,” Heustis said.
Heustis dug into crash record data for 24-Hour News 8 and identified three intersections consistently topping the lists.
In his 15 years serving Marion County, Heustis said officers have most often been called to respond to accidents at 38th Street and Michigan Road, the intersection of 82nd Street and Allisonville Road and Southport Road and Emerson Avenue.
In the fall of 2013, the Marion County Traffic Safety Partnership created a list of enforcement areas on which regional departments were asked to focus. IMPD, departments in Speedway, Lawrence, Beech Grove, Cumberland and Indiana State Police were given a list of high crash intersections supplied by the Center for Criminal Justice Research. According to IMPD, officers throughout Marion County were asked to keep eyes on the following locations in an effort to reduce crashes:
- Albany Street and Madison Avenue
- Rockville Road and Girls School Road
- 82nd Street and Allisonville Road
- Fall Creek Parkway North Drive and East 38th Street
- Raymond Street and Shelby Street
- Emerson Avenue and Southport Road
- 86th Street and Michigan Road
- 86th Street and Ditch Road
- Stop 11 Road and Madison Avenue
- I-65 and I-70 downtown
- 38th Street and Lafayette Road
Speedway Police Department
- 16th Street and Georgetown Road
- 16th Street and Crawfordsville Road
- Cunningham Road and Crawfordsville Road
Lawrence Police Department
- 38th Street and Post Road
- Pendleton Pike & Post Road
- Shadeland Avenue and Pendleton Pike
- I-465 and Pendleton Pike to 71st Street
Indiana State Police
- I-65 SB 110 to 103 mile markers (mm)
- I-70 EB 83 to 89 mm
- I-465 SE to NE 49 to 40 mm
- I-65 NB 113 to 118 mm
- I-465 SW 11 to 2 mm
Beech Grove Police Department
- Emerson Avenue and I-465
- Emerson Avenue and Thompson Road
- Emerson Avenue and Main Street
Cumberland Police Department
- Washington Street and Mitthoefer Road
- Post Road and Washington Street
The Indianapolis Department of Public Works (DPW) said it does its part to improve safety on roads across the city by monitoring the same crash records as police.
“It’s important for us to take a look at intersections that have been deemed problematic in determining whether or not we can make improvements to that intersection,” DPW assistant administrator Nathan Sheets said. “What we’re really doing is looking at each individual crash and determining what kind of trends are across those crashes and coming up with engineering solutions to address those.”
DPW said some solutions to improve safety can be as simple as traffic signal changes or signage, while others are more complex and call for construction. Heading into spring 2014, DPW had six safety projects planned.
The projects were determined necessary due in part to ratios that compare the number of crashes at an intersection and the average number of vehicles to travel through those areas on a daily basis.
DPW said the safety improvement projects that were under design and their estimated construction dates were:
- Stop 11 Road and Madison Avenue (October 2014)
- Shelby Street and Raymond Street (November 2014)
- 30th Street and Shadeland Avenue (May 2014)
- 79th Street and Michigan Road (May 2014)
- 10th Street and Tibbs Avenue (Oct. 2014)
- 11th Street and West Street (May 2014)