OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - When it comes to traveling on Ocean Springs Rd., drivers usually describe it in one way: Dangerous. Now, efforts are underway to make the four and a half-mile stretch of two-lane road more safe, including possibly widening it in some areas and installing pedestrian pathways.
Heather George just dropped her child off at daycare, but doing so is always a challenge.
"Well, there's definitely a lot of speeding on the road with the speed limit being 45. Of course, no one is doing that. And the passing on the road as well. It's kind of dangerous," George said.
Samantha McGill is pumping gas, getting ready to go to work at a clinic on the road. Improvements would make her day.
"There's a lot of traffic on this road with the hospital down the road, a lot of clinics down here. Daycares and things like that. There's a lot of traffic, so widening the road would be very ideal," said McGill.
Norman Woolf used Ocean Springs Rd. almost every day for his yard care job.
"I know that everyone speeds for sure. It's never safe. Even coming off one of the wide roads onto this road is extremely hairy," Woolf explained.
Using this road can be deadly, according to Nancy East.
"A lady was killed right here by my driveway. It's been probably four years ago now, riding a bicycle, and there was nowhere for her to go, no shoulder on the road," East recalled.
Some of the people who live on Ocean Springs Rd. and travel it on a daily basis say it has become so dangerous, so much of a concern, they've come up with a set of family rules. That includes Carolann Risley Leasure, buckling up the toddler before hitting the road.
"No one can pull out left or right if they see a car in their sights, because there's a dotted line. Cars are coming off I-10, and when they are passing we can have a head-on collision. It's happened almost twice," Leasure said.
Seventeen accidents have happened this year on the two-mile stretch of road in the city limits, according to Sgt. Alfred Parker, with the Ocean Springs Police Department.
"People speed on that road, and with no center turn lane, people turn across traffic, stop and turn across traffic. We do have read end collisions," said Parker.
With new safety measures in place, those could be coming to an end.
A public open house to gather input on making the road safer is set for Thursday between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Ocean Springs Civic Center on Hwy. 90. $100,000 has been spent on preliminary engineering plans. Actual work on the road could be months away.