Writer stresses need for reflectors on Highway 19-E at Valley Forge

9:06 am | October 29, 2012

To the editor:

About the traffic on Highway 19-E, our family lives on Clay Little Road along with about 35 to 40 other residents about three miles out of town.

You talk about congestion! We have a service station, an antique store, Blackberry Station, Valley Forge United Methodist Church, Doe River Baptist Church and East Tennessee ATV and Power Sports, and about a mile up the road is Valley Forge School, Valley Forge Christian Church and Valley Forge Free Will Baptist Church, in addition to other churches and businesses.

You should try to get into the turning lane anytime of the day or night. I’ve waited 10 to 15 minutes to get onto the highway. When it is dark, raining or foggy, it’s so hard to see to get across the four-lane. If we had reflectors in the highway, it would really help a lot. We have two red lights this side of the jail and there is not another until you get to Newland, N.C.

I’ve tried for years to get reflectors put in the road. I started with Ralph Cole when he was our representative. I called him and wrote him letters. I did receive one letter and he stated there was not enough money for it at the time.

I called Rusty Crowe to see if he could do anything and he returned my call — still no way to do it.

Then when Kent Williams was elected, I went to his office and talked to him about the congestion up our way. He said he would see what he could do, but we never did hear anything else about it.

Since then, they resurfaced the four-lane and should and could have added reflectors. There are reflectors all the way to Johnson City, all the way to Bristol, all the way to Mountain City, and starting about Hampton all the way through Roan Mountain to North Carolina. However, there are none from town to Valley Forge, where we really could use them, with all the congestion we have.

If we had a red light somewhere near the Valley Forge School area, it would help to hold traffic until people could get out onto the highway. Another thing is speed. It could be lowered in this area to 35 mph and be enforced. Give tickets to all who deserve it.

Another place is Betsy Towne Shopping Center. People ignore the stop sign and pull out right in front of us. Recently, there was a fatality there.

We do need to do something to help all of us. There should be cables put in the median.

We’ve had a lot of accidents and fatalities in the past year or two on the highway from Valley Forge to Elizabethton. I hope others will agree with me, and we can do something to help others and our community.

Trilla Little, Elizabethton

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