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Homeowner pleads for drivers to slow down after multiple wrecks in his yard

Jeff and Andy looking at rocks.jpeg
Posted at 8:12 PM, May 19, 2023

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado — Speeding and impaired driving are the leading factors that contributed to a record 56 traffic fatalities in Colorado Springs last year. Yet drivers in the Pikes Peak Region seems reluctant to lose their lead foot.

The El Paso County Sheriff's Office shared a photo on Twitter Wednesday of a deputy's radar gun that clocked a speeder going 113 miles per hour on Colorado Highway 94. The tweet notes that speeding is the largest contributor to traffic fatalities at 40 percent.

Jeff Cook is all too familiar with the damage that speeding can cause. His home is located near the intersection of Constitution Avenue and Avondale Drive at the crest of a hill. The road curves near his property, yet many drivers who climb the hill going west from Powers Boulevard are going too fast and wreck in his yard.

The most recent crash happened Thursday night. The driver of a pick-up knocked over the stop sign on Avondale and high-centered the truck on some boulders lining the edge of the property.

Cook said there have been three crashes at this intersection this year. Another driver took out his neighbor's fence a few weeks earlier.

"We've had the street light replaced 3 times and every time they've done it, it's been taken back out by a wreck."

The worst crash he's experienced since buying the home happened in February of 2022. A driver was speeding uphill on Constitution and crashed into his house.

"The car came about two feet from where we were sleeping at the time and did a 90-degree turn and took out our garage," Cook said.

The wreck caused more than $100,000 in property damage.

"Nobody was injured, just a lot of stress ever since, a lot of PTSD, we've been through a lot of doctors visits, those kinds of things."

He added bollards to the edge of his driveway to protect the home from future crashes. The steel posts are plant in four feet of concrete and stand four feet above ground.

Cook believes that drivers simply don't see the curve in the road until it's too late. The missing street light doesn't help. I was last replaced in November and was knocked over in a crash a week later.

But the biggest problem is speeding.

"You're supposed to do 35 miles an hour, and nobody here does 35," Cook said.

His solution? A three-way stop sign.

"We put a stop sign in, maybe we won't have such a bad traffic situation, or they'll actually do 35 miles an hour."

Cook said he's contacted the police department and the city streets division to ask for help with the problem.

A spokesman for the CSPD said the department's traffic unit will routinely conduct speed enforcement in areas where they receive complaints. He recommends the public report speeding problems through the city's GoCOS! mobile app.

The free application can be downloaded from both the Apple App Store and Google Play.
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