In March 2019, the NC Department of Transportation converted the intersection of Highway 42 East and Highway 96 North of Selma into a four-way stop. According to a 2018 study by JoCoReport.com, Highway 42 and 96 was the 28th most dangerous intersection in Johnston County based on the number of crashes for the previous 3 years.
To try and reduce the number of collisions, the NC DOT responded with a four-way stop. Even with the new safety improvements, the intersection continues to see crashes.
On September 13th, two drivers were ticketed after their vehicles collided at the intersection.
According to the NC Highway Patrol, Nancy Barnes Sullivan, 59, of Middlesex was traveling east on Highway 42 and failed to stop for the stop sign at the intersection. Her 2014 Nissan collided with a 2000 Chevy truck driven by Phillip Keith Ward, 62, of Selma. Both drivers and a 3 year-old passenger in Sullivan’s vehicle were transported by ambulance to the hospital. All the injuries were minor.
Trooper B.W. Jones estimated Sullivan was traveling at 55mph at the time of impact. Ward was traveling at 10 miles per hour. Sullivan was cited for a stop sign violation. Ward was cited for not having an operators license.
In April, another serious crash occurred at the intersection.
The DOT plans to convert Highway 42 at Highway 96 into a roundabout in the summer of 2021. The DOT says when the roundabout is completed in two years, the design will improve safety and traffic flow by requiring all drivers to slow down going through it and by eliminating the stop-and-go nature of a traditional intersection. The project also will include street lighting at the roundabout to increase visibility and safety at night.
Photos by John Payne