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Hampton mulls school-zone lights

| Wednesday, June 19, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Bethany Hofstetter | Pine Creek Journal
Hampton officials are looking into the need for flashing school zone lights at the district schools after a group of parents requested the school board look into the safety issue on McCully Road near the High School.

Hampton Township School District officials plan to look into the need for flashing school-zone lights at the district's buildings after worried parents questioned pedestrian safety along McCully Road.

The school board gave the administration permission to work with a consultant over the summer at a cost not to exceed $3,500 to determine the district's needs to move forward with the possible plan.

The school board does not meet again until August.

Superintendent John Hoover said district officials plan to start the process by talking with a contractor to determine what is needed from the district to install the lights and how much the project would cost.

Because McCully is a state road, Hoover said, PennDOT officials might require a traffic study to be completed in order to grant permission to install the flashing lights. District officials also will work with the consultant to determine if a traffic study already has been completed that the district can use for the purposes of their project.

“These are all things we can look into,” Hoover said.

Residents who live off of McCully Road initially brought their worries to district officials because of visibility concerns along the road and increased vehicular speeds.

“We believe students are at risk,” said Carrie McCarthy, a parent who lives in the neighborhood across from the high school baseball field. “The children all walk to school; there are no busses.”

Currently, there are a number of pedestrian crosswalk signs along McCully road and painted crosswalks lines on the road. However, parents said, vehicles are not slowing down along the stretch of road that provides direct access to the district high school and baseball fields.

Hoover said he has been given estimates that range from $10,000 to $20,000 to install the flashing school-zone lights but will request the consultant provide more information and look at the need for and feasibility of installing the lights at all of the district's buildings.

“We'll have him look at all of them, but we may need to prioritize,” Hoover said.

District officials said the public will not see the lights on the first day of school, they hope to have the study completed by the beginning of the 2013-14 school year.

Bethany Hofstetter is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6364 or bhofstetter@tribweb.com.

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