Baytown community fights for changes to popular highway

By Joel Eisenbaum - Investigative Reporter

BAYTOWN, Texas - A stretch of State Highway 146 in Baytown, where 55 accidents were recorded in less than a year, needs better traffic controls, according to residents.

In the most recent accident, last Wednesday, one man died and three others were injured.

The area in question is south of Interstate 10 and north of Ferry Road, according to a group that wants more traffic lights and lower speed limits.

"You can't even cross the road safely in the morning during rush hour," Brenda Medina, a resident, said.

The state highway is two lanes in each direction, posted speed limits range from 55-60 mph in the area.

At least seven separate subdivisions have entrances along the approximate seven mile stretch.

"I often feel very vulnerable to the traffic that's going up and down," Janice Gustin, a resident, said.

Medina started a Facebook page, to drum-up support for additional safety measures on the highway that is a routine thoroughfare for school buses, cars, and big rigs shuttling hazardous material between refineries.

"We are trying to get our state representative on board. This is important," Medina said.

There is undoubtedly a fair amount of bureaucracy involved in making changes to a state highway. TXDOT told Local 2 that administration of the section of 146 in question is the responsibility of the city of Baytown.

The road crosses both Harris and Chambers counties.

A recent TXDOT study found 55 accidents occurred within roughly the same boundaries between August 31, 2012 and July 31, 2013.

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