Study recommends barrier at site of deadly Summerlin crash - 8 News NOW

Study recommends barrier at site of deadly Summerlin crash

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LAS VEGAS --  A traffic study is recommending that the city of Las Vegas install a barrier on Summerlin Parkway where two people were hit and killed by an alleged drunk driver in February.

The Summerlin Parkway Traffic Study says the barrier will reduce the potential for "cross-median collisions," which have occurred three times over the past five years. The crashes resulted in three fatalities. The study did uncover a high number of crashes where the vehicle lost control and ended up in the median. There were 68 of those collisions over the 5-year period which resulted in four deaths.
Savanna Gonzales, 20, and her passenger Frank Spenia, 31, were killed on eastbound Summerlin Parkway at Rampart Boulevard when a pickup truck driven by Gustavo Martinez Garcia crossed the median and slammed into their car. Garcia was arrested and charged with felony DUI. A white cross marks the area to remind drivers of the deadly crash.

Prior to the 2007, there were plans to widen the parkway and install a raised concrete median along the center of the parkway to handle growth along the road, but funding for the $60 million project dried up when the recession hit and construction dropped off.

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada recently requested the release of some unused funds from the widening project which amounts to approximately $4.1 million. The city of Las Vegas will use those funds to pay for the new barrier along the entire median.

"The way it works is when vehicles leave the road, they hit the barriers and cables can stretch and grab it almost like a web and redirects them back," said Michael Janssen, city of Las Vegas.

City officials plan to put the project out to bid in the next 12 to 18 months.


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