Traffic light timing change on Columbia’s Route 3 - Republic-Times | News

Traffic light timing change on Columbia’s Route 3

By on October 24, 2018 at 1:07 pm

Emily Webb

Stacie Thoma

The Columbia Police Department, led by Chief Jerry Paul, has been on a mission  to curb and combat traffic crashes on the Route 3 corridor. 

They received what they hope will be a major boost from the Illinois Department of Transportation this week as additional signage and rumble strips, along with changes to the timings of traffic lights, are being implemented.

The initiative to make Route 3 safer began in earnest in early March of this year following the death of Emily Webb in a crash at Route 3 and Veterans Parkway, in which the driver of a dump truck allegedly ran a red light. The collision killed Webb instantly and injured her six children, all of whom were passengers in the vehicle.

Almost immediately, a dialogue began that included Paul, Columbia administrators, civilians and representatives from IDOT, which controls the state highway.

Pictured is a temporary lighted message board alerting motorists entering Columbia from the south that the timings of Route 3 traffic signals have changed. The move is one of several attempts by IDOT to increase safety along the Route 3 corridor. (Andrea Saathoff photo)

“IDOT has been a very good partner,” Paul said. 

An early September crash at the very same intersection killed Stacie Thoma and solidified the resolve to fix Route 3.

Paul, for his part, implemented an “all hands on deck” philosophy for patrolling Route 3 and hired a dedicated Route 3 traffic enforcement officer with a retrofitted, unmarked car, and he’s been busy.

So far in 2018, the number of citations for disobeying a traffic signal written by Columbia officers has increased 679 percent over 2017, while citations for driving while operating an electronic device have increased 317 percent…>>> 


Read the rest of the story in the October 24, 2018, issue of the Republic-Times.

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Andrea F.D. Saathoff

Andrea is a graduate of Gibault High School and the University of Missouri School of Journalism, the University of Missouri Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville College of Education. She lives in Columbia with her husband and their twin toddler sons. When she isn't cheering on St. Louis Cardinals baseball or riding the emotional roller coaster of Mizzou Tigers football, she enjoys attending and participating in the many family events the county has to offer. email: