SOMERS, N.Y. – A Brick Hill Road resident has complained to the Somers Town Board about speeding and commercial traffic on her street.
Gio Biziack said motorists who seem to be using the road as a shortcut between Routes 202 and 139 have her and her neighbors playing "Russian Roulette.”
Biziack suggested that commercial vehicles be banned from Brick Hill Road, that a traffic light be placed at the corner of Route 202 and Brick Hill, and that right turns on red be prohibited at both major intersections. “If we added traffic enforcement we could raise revenue for the town,” she added.
“Right now, the number of commercial vehicles is staggering,” she said. “I consistently see 18-wheelers gearing up on our road, creating enough vibration to shake my house and crack my basement walls and the road itself.”
Neighborhood representatives have complained to the Town Board in the past, Biziack continued. “At that time, the through-traffic was measured and the results showed 660 cars, 44 school buses and 11 commercial vehicles passing through in one hour.”
“We did discuss this at length years ago,” said Supervisor Mary Beth Murphy. “I’ll look into it again.”
The Police Department often positions one of its movable electronic speed signs on Brick Hill giving motorists their current speed and automatically creating a record.
“Have you noticed any difference since the sign went up?” asked Councilman Richard Clinchy.
“I did see a change,” replied Biziack, “but after they pass the sign you can hear the roar of the engine again.”
“The police should look at the data,” suggested Councilman Rick Morrissey. “If 75 percent of the traffic exceeds the speed limit, you put a cruiser there and write tickets.”
“Our ticket-writing has increased significantly all over town during the past five years,” said Murphy, “but unfortunately, we don’t get the revenue from those tickets. The state gets most of it.”
“What would it take to prohibit commercial vehicles?’’ Councilman Anthony Cirieco asked Town Attorney Roland Baroni.
“It’s actually very complicated,” Baroni replied. “If you don’t have a weight-limitation bridge, it’s very difficult. You’d need an engineer’s report. You can’t ‘just say no.’ ”
“And we can’t put up a traffic light because Route 202 is a state road, so the state would dictate that,” added Murphy.
“I’ll look back at the file and share it with the board,” she continued. “And I’ll discuss it with the police chief.”
Biziack concluded by saying, “We are a quiet town, a peaceful town. Let’s do something to keep it that way.”
A rough estimate of the distance saved by taking the Brick Hill Road shortcut, as measured on Google Maps, is three-quarters of a mile.