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Traffic signal repairs coming to Mandarin intersection after crash

Pole damaged in fatal crash in February

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The I-TEAM is helping drivers in Mandarin get the results they have been asking for since the spring, after a deadly crash damaged a traffic signal pole at the busy intersection of San Jose Boulevard and Old St. Augustine Road.  Drivers told News4Jax they were also concerned for the safety of pedestrians, because the pedestrian signal wasn’t fully operational.

On Feb. 18, a driver slammed into a traffic signal pole at the intersection in a crash that killed the driver.  The pole was damaged, and has been down ever since.  More than six months later, pieces of a traffic signal can still be seen in the grass nearby.

One small business owner in the area said the deadly crash was one example of why she considers the intersection dangerous.

“We had someone over the weekend, Monday a week ago, on a bicycle, and he didn’t even know that that was there,” said Janet Davis, owner of Mandarin Sealife.

Not only did Davis say that accidents keep occurring at the intersection, she said drivers cut through the parking lot of her business to avoid the confusion of merging onto San Jose Boulevard.

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“It’s a huge pedestrian issue,” Davis said.  “My husband and I have been run over by someone coming through the parking lot.”

Mandarin residents said city engineers had told them it would take more than six months to complete the repairs at the intersection.

In an email sent to the chief of the city’s Traffic Engineering Division, a resident wrote, "I would think this is a liability leaving that huge mess lying by the road. There are no lights for pedestrians crossing such a busy intersection which is used by children from San Jose Prep Academy and other pedestrians on a daily basis.”

The I-TEAM followed up with the city, asking when it would take action to address the issue at the intersection, and got the following response:

Traffic Engineering will proceed with a temporary repair to the pedestrian crossing signal to allow for operation while awaiting the new signal pole delivery. A temporary (separate) pole will be installed to support the pedestrian signal, with installation anticipated to be completed by Monday August 6th.”

- Tia Ford, city of Jacksonville spokesperson

The city expects that the new traffic light pole will be installed in September, and the old one will be removed at that time.