WESTWOOD (CBS) – In a Westwood neighborhood they’re saying “here we go again” after an 18 wheeler slammed into the East Street Bridge that’s become notorious.
“They call it the can opener it’s ripped so many tops off,” said neighbor Steve Reynolds.
There have been more than 80 crashes in a six year period. The town was so desperate it started posting videos of the mishaps to serve as a warning. There is also sign after sign warning of the 10’6” height of the bridge and the low clearance and they even start a mile away off Route 128 with a warning that trucks are not allowed on the roadway.
“The signs have never worked,” said Westwood town administrator Michael Jaillet. “We put $40,000 worth of signs onto that street. There’s not much more we can do.”
For neighbors the frustration factor is running high. Kathy Madigan says she’s seen more accidents than she can count. “The whole street was blocked off, you couldn’t get to 128 this morning,” she said. “You had to go around and there was lots and lots of traffic.”
This fall a new bridge span was put into place that raised the height about a foot, but the town is still trying to get another foot and a half. Work is planned next spring to lower the road itself so the bridge height will be increased to 13’6”.
“It’ll solve most of the problems, but will it ever solve all the problems,” said Michael Walsh, chairman of the Board of Selectman. “People just don’t pay attention.”
Fortunately there was no damage to the new bridge and the driver, who suffered minor injuries, has been cited for driving illegally on East Street.