Top crash sites in Ashland and Hanover County
Top Hanover County Crash Sites
Top Ashland Crash Sites
One intersection ushers drivers toward a commercial strip of big box stores, national chains and restaurants. The other is the main crossroads in a small town. Together, they accounted for more car accidents last year than any other intersections in Hanover County or the Town of Ashland.
According to year-end data from local law enforcement, the top-two most accident-prone intersections in the area are Mechanicsville Turnpike and Bell Creek Road in Mechanicsville and the crossroads of Washington Highway and England Street in Ashland.
When combined, the two intersections of Bell Creek Road and Mechanicsville Turnpike accounted for 30 traffic accidents in 2013, according to year-end data from the Hanover Sheriff’s Office. The intersections are the first two stoplights encountered when heading east on Mechanicsville Turnpike from Interstate 295 and both serve heavily commercial areas, including retail giants like Walmart, Home Depot, Target and Best Buy, among others.
The next most accident-prone intersections in the sheriff’s office data were Chamberlayne Road and Atlee Station Road and Lee-Davis Road and Mechanicsville Turnpike, with 12 apiece. Chamberlayne Road and Atlee Road had the next highest accident total with 10 followed by Mechanicsville Turnpike and Wynbrook lane with nine wrecks.
The only intersection outside of the Route 301 or 360 corridors in the county’s top-10 was Peaks Road and Sliding Hill Road, where seven accidents occurred in 2013.
In 2013, the sheriff’s office investigated 1,340 total crashes, a 7 percent increase over 2012, which averages out to four accidents per day. Eleven of these crashes proved fatal, Col. David Hines, Hanover sheriff, outlined in his budget presentation to the board of supervisors last month.
The HCSO directs patrols to high-accident areas and also assembles a traffic safety unit and motor carrier inspection team. The sheriff’s office uses directed patrols to provide selective enforcement in identified areas, and partners with the community to identify and resolve problem areas. Hines also said that high traffic activity areas are continually monitored, and his office uses preventive efforts such as a radar trailer and enhanced patrols.
In the Town of Ashland, a total of 16 accidents – or 15 percent of the total crash volume in 2013 – occurred at the crossroads of Washington Highway and England Street, an intersection slated for major improvements in the coming year.
Another nine wrecks occurred at Ashcake Road and Washington Highway, followed by England Street and Hill Carter Parkway with seven crashes and England Street and Cottage Green Drive with six. Washington Highway and Pleasant Street rounded out the town’s top-five most accident-prone intersections with five crashes.
Overall, 2013 saw 109 crash reports in Ashland, a 30 percent increase from the year prior. Officer Chip Watts, of the Ashland Police Department, said that failure to yield right of way was the leading cause of car crashes in 2013, when it was a factor nearly 40 percent of the time. The next leading cause for accidents was following too closely at 18 percent, followed by reckless driving at 11 percent, driving under the influence at 5 percent and vehicles taking improper turns, which resulted in 4 percent of the total accident volume.
According to Watts, the most common day for accidents in Ashland is Friday. The most common time is between 2 and 3 p.m.