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South Haven man raises concerns over intersection after being injured in crash

Posted at 8:16 PM, Dec 04, 2014
and last updated 2014-12-04 20:16:20-05

SOUTH HAVEN, Mich.-- A man from South Haven who was injured in a crash is raising concerns over the intersection where it happened.

Richard Hickman was almost home when he tried to make a left turn off 2nd Avenue onto 71 1/2 Street.

"The lady t-boned me," Hickman said. "Wheel got knocked off, two broken bones in my neck, two broken bones in my arms, and lacerations on my forehead."

Hickman said he didn't see the other driver, who had the right of way, until it was too late.

"Looking out to my left, it was hard to see, so I creeped out like I usually do," He said. "Creeped out a little more, and it was an oncoming car that was just approaching me so fast."

According to a South Haven Police report, Hickman was cited for careless driving. While he admits he has a lengthy driving record, he said in this instance, he obeyed the stop sign and was not at fault.

Now unable to work because of his injuries, Hickman spends a lot of time watching the intersection from the window of his home.

"You can see a fire hydrant that sits about six feet," Hickman pointed out the window. "There's a bush, two trees--everything sits at least four feet high there."

Van Buren County Road Commission said they don't have any complaints about the area. FOX 17 drove through the intersection to check it out. While taking the same route as Hickman, everything from the elevation to the fire hydrant and trees, made it necessary to drive several feet beyond the stop sign to get the all clear to turn.

Hickman's not the only one who wants the intersection to become a 4-way stop.  Randy Resemer, who has lived nearby for more than 20 years, said he fears someone will be killed if it doesn't change.

"I've seen a lot of close calls there--cars squeezing out, and they can't see the oncoming traffic," Resemer said. "Cars get flying down this road going south and somebodies gonna probably get hit real good there one of these days."

FOX 17 tried to speak with someone at the Van Buren County Road Commission about what it would take to turn the intersection into a 4-way stop. As of Thursday night, they hadn't responded.