By Erin Gerstenzang

It’s a situation that no one ever wants to be in – a car accident. Unfortunately for residents and drivers, this intersection has become a hot spot for traffic accidents. Over the years, many residents have expressed their concerns about the dangerous intersection and the need for immediate action.

Citing issues such as poor visibility, confusing traffic patterns, and a lack of proper signage, many have called for the county to take action to improve safety at the intersection, such as adding more street lights, improving road markings, and increasing police presence.

The Causes of Accidents at Ponce De Leon and Artwood Road

Several factors contribute to the high incidence of traffic accidents at this intersection. One of the most significant is the heavy traffic volume. Ponce De Leon and Artwood Road are both major thoroughfares in Atlanta, and they intersect in a heavily populated area. As a result, there are always numerous cars, trucks, and buses jockeying for position, which increases the risk of collisions.

Another contributing factor is the layout of the intersection. It’s a complex intersection with multiple lanes, a blind turn, a stoplight, and a crosswalk, making it difficult to navigate. Bad weather makes it all the more dangerous. Many drivers become confused, which leads to mistakes and collisions.

Finally, speed is also a major factor in accidents at this intersection. Drivers often exceed the posted speed limit, reducing their reaction time and increasing any collision’s severity.

Specifically, residents have complained about the following:

  • Artwood needs to be widened to accommodate simultaneous left and right turns onto Ponce. Drivers currently make an unofficial lane, which is dangerous and could lead to accidents.
  • The traffic light at the intersection is not sufficient for safe turning onto Artwood. Drivers traveling east on Ponce have poor visibility and need a leading green arrow to turn left safely onto Artwood.
  • Drivers often speed on Ponce, and there is a curve west of the intersection. Although there are signs, the light can still be a surprise. Rumble strips could alert drivers, and the DOT should replace the curve signs that were removed during construction.
  • The historic railroad bridge over Ponce just past the Artwood intersection is problematic. The signage for its low clearance is not sufficient, and large trucks often divert onto Artwood, leading to accidents.
  • The lights at Artwood and Scott/Ponce fork are not coordinated, leading to frustrating and dangerous situations for drivers during heavy traffic.
  • Georgia Power should have a record of how often the intersection’s power poles have been damaged or taken out due to accidents.

The Consequences of Accidents at Ponce De Leon and Artwood Road

The consequences of an accident at this intersection can be severe. Injuries can range from minor to life-threatening, and property damage can be extensive. Moreover, the financial costs associated with an accident can be staggering. Medical bills, car repairs, and lost wages can quickly add up, leaving victims struggling to recover physically and financially.

In response to these concerns, the county has initiated several measures to improve safety at the intersection. One such measure includes the installation of a pedestrian island to help reduce the risk of pedestrian accidents.

Despite these efforts, accidents continue to occur, causing frustration and concern among residents. Some have even taken to social media to express their displeasure, sharing photos and videos of accidents as they happen.