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New Canaan's Most Dangerous Roads

Since 2008, police have responded to 10 motor vehicle accidents on upper Ponus Ridge including two fatalities in 2011.

 

The is under investigation and police cannot discuss possible causes or contributing factors. Sgt. Carol Ogrinc of the said accident reconstructionists are continuing their investigation; .

Since 2008, New Canaan police have responded to 10 accidents, including two fatalities in 2011, on the upper portion of Ponus Ridge Road according to Chief Edward Nadriczny.

"The pure number, 10 accidents over three years in that portion of Ponus Ridge is not significant," he said in an email to Patch," What is concerning is the severity of some of the accidents."

Nadriczny said most of the accidents have taken place between Lost District Drive and Reservoir Road. That's where the Dec. 22 incident that took the life of James Jackson Savage, 74, of Seattle Washington happened. In May 2011, was killed in a one car accident just south of Reservoir Road. The third accident occurred in 1997.

Between 2008 and 2011 five motor vehicle fatalities were reported in New Canaan, according to Ogrinc. Two occurred on and one on Smith Ridge Road.

Nadriczny said investigations of the two earlier fatal accidents on Ponus Ridge Road concluded excessive speed was a factor in both and in one.

"Traveling unreasonably fast" appeared to be a common denominator in the non-fatal accidents as well, he said. Alcohol consumption was also a contributing factor in one of those accidents.

"If you put alcohol into that equation it is not 'will an accident happen?' it is 'when will it happen?'" he said.

Nadriczny said the fact that Ponus Ridge is narrow and windy and sections of it are dark were contributing factors in the accidents. The other causative factor, which he said is often hard to measure, is distracted driving.

When assessing the causes of accidents on any road in town, Nadriczny said the police look at roadway design, conditions and driver behavior.

Design modifications were made to lower Weed St. and "aggressive signage" was added to Frogtown Road in hopes of reducing accidents on those roads. Nadriczny said the reported accidents on those roads have gone down dramatically since changes were made.

rough1 January 04, 2012 at 12:53 PM
Doesn't it blow your mind that a guy who was allegedly the driver in a hit and run accident that left one person dead "has not spoken to police" after two weeks?? I sthis guy so rich and successgul that he is above the law?!!
heavens sake January 04, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Oenoke Rd (RT 124) from West Rd. to border of Scotts Corners NY is the most dangerous road in New Canaan, not because of accidents, but because of tall trees overhanging the road by 45 degrees. A few of these trees are rotting at the base. When driving under these trees during high winds and snow storms saying a prayer might help, but cutting them down would be better and is the responsibility of the Highway Dept. Be forewarned.
J Bauer January 04, 2012 at 03:01 PM
HS - you make a good point. This is a prevalent problem on many of the town's main arteries, however. Weed Street and Old Stamford Road have the same issue, as do many other streets. I think the tree warden needs to be a lot more aggressive on pruning in the coming year.
Patrick Henry January 04, 2012 at 03:16 PM
New Canaan’s 15 Most Dangerous Roads (in no particular order): -Ponus Ridge Rd. (enough is enough) -Greenley Rd. (like a bobsled course) -Buttery Rd. (built for the horse and carriage) -Parade Hill Rd. (Cars speeding and that intersection with 123? Someone will die) -Jelliff Mill Rd. (cemetery is conveniently located) -Weed St. (SLOW DOWN) -Old Stamford Rd. (see Weed St.) -Laurel Rd. (Trees and turns) -Old Kings Highway (narrow, windy) -New Norwalk/Smith Ridge Rd. (See Weed and Old Stamford) -Old Norwalk Rd. (Surprised more cars have not flipped on the turns) -White Oak Shade (turns +speed=accidents) -Oenoke Ridge Rd. (enough is enough) -South Bald Hill Rd. (So narrow, it should be a one-way street) -Frogtown Rd. (That hill is NOT a roller coaster ride kids)
Patrick Henry January 04, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Oh, forgot Silvermine Rd. Sheer volume and sheer stupidity of drivers.
Joe Machete January 04, 2012 at 07:45 PM
If you slow down a little bit, your chances of a car accident drop like a rock. It's called common sense even if it takes you a minute or two longer to get to where you're going. I drive the speed limit and have never crashed my car in NC and I've been on every road numerous times.
mary parker January 06, 2012 at 07:38 AM
I drive these roads every day and night. I go the speed limit but still at night have a hard time negotiating turns in the road and corners that have tree roots growing in the pavement with no room for error. Rock and mud slides that are right at the edge of roads. Country club road and especially Greenley Road. Even when going below the speed limit I have to swerve and worse when a car is coming from the other direction. Joggers running next to each other in the road causing drivers to cross over to the other lane, bikers side by side causing cars to cross over to the other lane. So many dangers. My suggestion is if you aren't familiar of the road, slow down. How about more street lights on dangerous roads out side of the center of town?
mary parker January 06, 2012 at 07:44 AM
Also whatched a woman today almost get hit by a car that ran a red light and the lady was crossing a street in town with the cross walk telling her to. The driver of the car got mad at her. why aren't the police up town putting a stop to this? I see this every day multiple times.
W. H. Taylor January 09, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Talk to the car manufacturers--the horsepower wars have a lot to do with it. Sedans, SUVs, even pickup trucks are available with 500+ horsepower--300 horsepower is commonplace. Most drivers have no idea how hard technology (ABS, DSC) is working to keep their vehicle on the road.

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