Acreage residents sound off about notorious Northlake & Hall intersection

Residents want safeguards such as a traffic light

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - Residents of The Acreage brought their anger and their concern to the Indian Trail Improvement District with hopes of prompting new safeguards at one of the area's most notorious intersections. When it comes to the intersection of Hall and Northlake boulevards, residents say stop signs - even with flashing lights - are not enough.

"I am so sick in my stomach from going out there and having to see people be scraped off that road," said David Howell, who live in a home at that very intersection. "These kids are laying in the road, screaming bloody murder and there ain't a darn thing I can do for them except get on my knees and pray," he said.

Most recently, investigators say driver Kerri Chavez failed to stop at a stop sign on Hall Boulevard and slammed into a dump truck on Northlake Boulevard. Her son, Sebastian, 4, died.

"They haven't seen what I've seen," said Richard Vassalotti, who lives in the Acreage. He is also a captain with Palm Beach County Fire Rescue and has responded to many of the recent incidents at the intersection. "When you don't see these things, you become detached from it," he said.

Many of the resident are calling for additional safeguards such as four-way stops, rumble strips and a traffic light.

Hall Boulevard is overseen by the Indian Trail Improvement District but that particular stretch of Northlake Boulevard is overseen by Palm Beach County. The county uses federal guidelines before putting in any new traffic signal. Traffic volume - not necessarily the number of crashes - is used as the benchmark. 

Jess Santamaria, the Palm Beach County commissioner who represents the area, says that formula needs to be changed.

"You got to do it before; not after," he said. "You have to rearrange those priorities. One death is one death too many," said Santamaria.

Any changes to that intersection will come after additional discussion, potential traffic studies and financial approval.





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