MINOR ACCIDENT, MAJOR CONCERNS

taxi-accidentAn accident at the intersection of Ridge and Fair Haven roads is the latest reminder how dangerous the intersection can be, officials said. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Fair Haven Fire Chief Jim Cerruti spends more time than he’d like at the intersection of Ridge and Fair Haven roads.

He and his volunteer crew were out there again Tuesday afternoon for a fender-bender that, while there were no injuries involved, highlights safety concerns that Cerruti says haven’t been addressed with any kind of action.

The accident, in which a Ford sport utility vehicle rear-ended a Shore Taxi Chevy Malibu, resulted in a half-hour detour from Fair Haven Road as emergency responders worked to clear the scene Tuesday afternoon.

“It happens all the time here,” Cerruti said, noting that the intersection is one of the borough’s most dangerous.

Several factors make accidents prevalent at the intersection, said fire police volunteer Bill Copeland, who lives nearby.

The first is the speed limit, he said. In the Rumson section of Ridge, just east of the intersection, the limit is 35 miles-per-hour. Once you enter Fair Haven it switches to 40 mph.

“I think they should take that 40 mile-per-hour sign down. That should be number one,” Copeland said. “People are in a rush, and we’re all going to the same place.”

Another factor is the sightline. Cars heading west from Rumson head down a moderately steep decline at an angle to Fair Haven Road, making for a dangerous crossroads for motorists crossing or turning onto Ridge.

The blinking traffic signal at the intersection, Copeland and Cerruti said, simply isn’t enough to reduce the risk of accidents at the intersection.

“One of these days, I hope they get a traffic light in there,” Cerruti said.