ADOT taking steps to reduce number of wrong way crashes

Posted: Updated:
The Arizona Department of Transportation has put up more wrong way signs to help drivers. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) The Arizona Department of Transportation has put up more wrong way signs to help drivers. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
A Texas study says spike strips don't prevent wrong-way crashes (Source: KPHO/KTVK) A Texas study says spike strips don't prevent wrong-way crashes (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
There are more signs up to prevent wrong-way drivers. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) There are more signs up to prevent wrong-way drivers. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

A deadly wrong-way crash along the Loop 101 freeway in Phoenix Tuesday morning raises new questions about driver safety.

[READ MORE: 2 dead in wrong-way crash, car fire on Loop 101]

A recent study shows that from 2004-2014, there were 245 wrong-way crashes in Arizona, resulting in 91 fatalities.

The high number of wrong-way crashes prompted Arizona's Department of Transportation to put up hundreds of oversized "wrong way" - and "do not enter" signs along freeway off-ramps in hopes of getting drivers' attention.

But it's not always enough, especially with the number impaired drivers out on the road.

Some motorists have wondered whether metal bar stop sticks you see in parking garages, could be used to stop wrong-way drivers.

[READ MORE: Why spike strips won't stop Arizona's wrong-way crashes]

ADOT's Doug Nintzel doesn't think so.

Nintzel said that studies have been done showing the stop sticks are not a good option.

"They don't hold up," said Nintzel. "The spikes wind up breaking off and it becomes a safety issue for drivers and other vehicles, and can affect the ability for first responders who sometimes go the wrong-way on an off ramp."

ADOT officials are now working on a Wrong Way Vehicle Detection System that would use existing sensors to alert authorities and other motorists that someone is going the wrong way.

 A prototype of the new technology is expected to be tested along Interstate 17 sometime next year, Nintzel said.

Copyright 2016 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

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Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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