Grieving parents fight for changes at dangerous intersection

INDOT promises improvements in 30 days

NEW CASTLE, Ind. - A grieving couple is pleased that modifications will be made at the Henry County intersection where their son died in a car accident last month.

"Hopefully it will save somebody else's life. It's a very dangerous intersection," Tammy Neal said about the improvements the Indiana Department of Transportation has promised to make in 30 days.

Andrew Neal, 21, was killed in a crash at the intersection of County Road 300 South and State Road 103.

He was driving northbound on 103 and turned left into southbound traffic, colliding with another vehicle.

In the days after the crash, his parents wrote a letter to county commissioners saying enough is enough. The letter went on to ask about how difficult it is to install a stoplight, flashing lights or speed bumps. 

The couple didn't stop there, they also conducted a petition campaign.

"At the last commissioners meeting they provided us with over 100 names with a petition to INDOT. The community was requesting it and it does need to be rectified," Henry County Commissioner Kim Cronk said.

"I figured they would drag it out, drag it out and wouldn't do anything. But then they did something…I'm happy they are gonna do something," Andrew’s father, Allen Neal, said.

The Neals were notified about changes in a letter from INDOT Commissioner Karl Browning. The letter mentioned the tragic loss of their son.

"They are gonna put up big stop signs with yellow flashing lights. They are also gonna put another sign further back warning people that they need to stop. But I'd like them to put in speed bumps too," Tammy Neal said.

State Rep. Tom Saunders, R-Lewisville, said this is a case of the government responding to a tragedy.

“Unfortunately sometimes it does take a tragedy. My sympathies to the family," Saunders said.

Crossroad warning signs will be moved further from the intersection to provide more advanced notice that drivers are approaching. For better visibility, the signs will have fluorescent yellow sheeting and amber flashers.

The traffic upgrades are set to be installed within 30 days.

Follow Derrik Thomas on Twitter: @derrikthomas

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