More ‘Wrong Way’ Signs Going up Along Interstates

PITTSTON TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- If you regularly drive on Interstate 81, you might have noticed a little more red than usual.

The red drivers may be seeing on interstates and other roads in Lackawanna and Luzerne counties are "Wrong Way" signs, placed by emergency crossovers as part of an ongoing initiative by PennDOT to keep drivers safe.

"Areas for emergency vehicles such as the police, ambulance, or a tow truck that needs to get to a crash that can't get there, so they have to turn around and go the other way," explained Trooper Deanna Piekanski about crossover roadways on interstate highways.

State police warn that these emergency crossovers on Interstate 81 and other highways are not for the everyday driver just because they missed an exit or want to turn around.

PennDOT is spending $600,000 to put new "Wrong Way" signs at 37 emergency crossovers and on 43 ramps on interstates and other major highways in Luzerne and Lackawanna counties.

"They made them bigger and more reflective, hopefully, to get the attention of the driver so they know not to use them and not to go that way," said Trooper Piekanski.

"Unfortunately, it had to be done and now it will be a better way for the drivers to be safer on the highway," said Rebecca Rybak, Northeast Highway Safety.

But other drivers question the need for "Wrong Way" signs at emergency crossovers.

"First of all, 'wrong way' makes no sense. You're not supposed to cross over in those anyway, so they're wasting their time putting the signs up and our money," Sally Feasle said. "Let's use that money to fill in all the potholes that will have out there, instead of just filling them let's fix the whole road."

PennDOT says more "Wrong Way" signs on highways will help keep drivers safe. PennDOT began putting up the signs in 2016 after a wrong-way crash on Interstate 81 in Lackawanna County that left five people dead.

PennDOT expects to finish putting up these newest "Wrong Way" signs on ramps and crossovers by the end of summer.

3 comments

  • fortisveritas

    Let that sink in folks. Over one half of a million dollars (your tax dollars) being spent on signs for people too lazy, ignorant, drunk, or stupid – to know they’re going the wrong way on the interstate. Think it will make a difference?

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