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I-Team: Old Forge residents concerned about street safety for children and themselves

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OLD FORGE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Residents who live along a busy street in Lackawanna County claim that street is a tragedy waiting to happen.

People living along Taroli Street in Old Forge say they have seen too many close calls, some even involving children at the school bus stop.

They called the I-Team for help claiming their concerns were falling on deaf ears with borough officials. Neighbors say not enough is being done to keep people safe.

Borough Officials tell Eyewitness News and insist they are aware of residents’ concerns and have taken action to address those concerns.

“This is probably around seven-tenths of a mile, straight away. They are doing 40 to 50 miles per hour,” said Old Forge resident Joe Moniak.

The posted speed limit is 25 miles per hour.

Moniak has lived on Taroli Street in Old Forge for 71 years. He says the street, which connects Main Street and Moosic Road, is getting busier and faster each year.

And he says many drivers ignore two stop signs at the intersection of Taroli Street and East Grace Street.

“The stop sign, they don’t stop. They fly through here,” said Moniak.

Brian McCabe says neighbors are concerned about kids getting on and off school buses at this intersection.

He says his 11-year-old daughter had a near miss.

“They told me that she was getting on the bus one morning, she was in the crosswalk and a car went around the school bus. The driver beeped the horn and yelled at him,” McCabe explained.

Mccabe would like to see a third stop sign placed at the intersection.

“I would like to see a stop sign on the other end coming up the hill,” said McCabe.

“We take their concerns very seriously. If we are not right there at that intersection we might be down the road a little bit or up the road a little bit,” explained Old Forge Police Department Chief Jason Dubernas

Dubernas insists his officers are in the Taroli Street area on a regular basis. He says in the last year alone, they have made nearly 50 traffic stops.

Dubernas explains how some neighbors want a stop sign and why it isn’t as easy as residents think it is.

“We have looked into that. The concern there is under PennDOT regulations you can’t use a stop sign to enforce speed and at that concerned intersection, there are already two stop signs there for traffic control devices,” Dubernas said.

Dubernas also says that placing a stop sign on Taroli Street, coming up the hill, could cause safety issues for vehicles during the winter months and could lead to more problems.

Once again residents insist more has to be done here to keep people safe. Eyewitness News will be monitoring the situation in the days and weeks ahead.

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