NBC

Construction in Melissa Creates a Difficult Commute for Drivers

Construction in Melissa is creating a difficult commute for drivers.

In the last two weeks, changes in traffic patterns near State Highway 121 and State Highway 5 have caused multiple accidents and confusion for drivers.

Officials at the Melissa Police Department said within the past two weeks there have been 8 accidents, one of them deadly.

Shane Blackburn, who works at the Beverage Store on Highway 121, sees the problem every day.

“At least every day there’s people squealing tires, honking horns…there’s just about one accident every day,” he said.

Major construction at the intersection has forced drivers using the highways to go the opposite direction than their used to. Highway 121 now veers to the left, and Highway 5 goes to the right.

Bob Erwin, a longtime resident in Melissa, told NBC 5 he takes an alternative route to avoid the area.

“I don’t even go that way, because I just knew it was going to be a mess when they changed it over,” Erwin said.

Officials at TxDOT said prior to the traffic switch, they put several detour signs and message boards in the area to highlight the change. They also double checked to make sure the road was properly striped and that safety measures were in place.

TXDOT and its contractor said they are working with the Melissa Police Department to determine whether any additional steps need to be taken to address the change in traffic pattern.

The Melissa Police Department said they plan to increase their presence in the area to make drivers slow down and pay attention to the changes.

TxDOT said they plan to complete construction by the end of 2018.

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