Thu., Jan. 05, 2017 ''That's Skippy.''    -- Jack Owens
photo by Dick Waterman

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    Bentonia US49 Bypass Stop Light / Lower Speed Limits Petition

    The US49 bypass around Bentonia, MS, is deadly and needs lower speed limits and stop lights similar to what was recently done for Flora, MS, which is only 5 miles away down the 4-lane toward Jackson.

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    The Bentonia Bypass Stop Light Petetion was created by John L. Neidigh, who presented the petition at the Bentonia, Mississippi, Town Council meeting, Tuesday, June 3, 2014. The Council voted to “fully support [Mr. Neidigh's] efforts” and entered that position into the minutes at Mr. Neidigh’s request. All present signed the petition, which comprised the first eleven (11) Petition signatures. Hardcopies of The Petition are at the following Bentonia businesses (Choose “Browser” not “Maps” if a popup appears asking how to view the following links. These Google Maps links work only in a browser.):

  • Blue Front Cafe
  • Bentonia BankPlus
  • Bentonia Bugs
  • Bentonia Dollar General
  • Bentonia Gas & Food
  • Bentonia Shell Restaurant & Truck Stop
  • Bentonia Town Hall
  • Don Carter’s Club on Martin Road
  • Flora Fred’s
  • Flora Hasty Tastee
  • Planters Supply
  • V & T Snack Shop
  • and also on Facebook:

    Here’s why we need your support: go to the Mississippi Department of Transportation’s (MDOT) Traffic Volumes page (also named “MDOT Traffic Count Application,” http://mdot.ms.gov/applications/trafficcounters/), zoom in on the US49 bypasses around Flora, MS, and Bentonia, MS, and you will see IDENTICAL traffic goes around both towns, that is 11,000 vehicles annually (12,000 according to 2015 MDOT data—the “new” Bentonia Dollar General store has significantly increased traffic!).

    Flora, MS’s, bypass has two new stop lights with lower speed limits, yet Bentonia, MS, has the maximum 65 MPH speed limit and no stop lights. Therefore, the Bentonia 49 bypass is basically a killing field, resulting in several serious and fatal accidents recently and through the years. The last accident at the US49 and Mississippi Highway 433 intersection (where one turns to go to Satartia, MS), Friday, May 23, 2014, killed three people and seriously injured the three who survived.

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    On Thursday, May 29, 2014, I called MDOT in Jackson, MS (601-359-7001), was transferred to the District 3 office in Yazoo City, MS (662-746-2513), and pointed these facts out to the person who answered the phone. Later that morning, a Maintenance Engineer returned my call and we spoke for several minutes. He said both he and his boss, the District 3 Engineer, think I have a good point and they would bring it up with the department in Jackson that actually makes these kind of decisions. The Maintenance Engineer also mentioned traffic engineering decisions are routinely reviewed following fatal accidents and citizen complaints.

    I sent the Maintenance Engineer a followup email and did not (and have not) recieved a reply, so I wrote The Bentonia Bypass Stop Light Petetion and presented it at the Bentonia, Mississippi, Town Council meeting, Tuesday, June 3, 2014. The Council voted to “fully support [my] efforts.” I requested The Council enter that position into their minutes, and they agreed to do that. All present signed the petition, which comprised the first eleven (11) Petition signatures. Hardcopies of The Petition are at Bentonia businesses, and I keep having to drop off new copies because so many have already signed it. The Petition is also on Facebook.

    If the above does not convince you to support The Petition, remember that dozens of school buses must make left turns and/or cross the 4-lane highway at Bentonia, MS, at least two times every school day. So, everyone, please comment, sign The Petition and do your part in helping prevent these tragic deaths from happening again!

    Thanks for you support,
    John L. Neidigh
    601-842-1854

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    A Tombstone for Meach
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    Site Maintained By Neidigh Hybrid WalnutP.O. Box 403, Bentonia, MS  39040


    Revised: Thu., Jan. 05, 2017, 11:55:45 AM