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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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June 12, 2013     Hays Free Press
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June 12, 2013
 

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Page 2A NEWS Hays Free Press * June 12, 2013 + + The Hays Free Press (ISSN 1087-9323) published weekly by Barton Publications, Inc., 122 N. Main St., Buda, TX 78610. Periodicals postage paid at Buda, TX 78610 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Barton Publications, Inc., P.O. Box 339, Buda, TX 78610. ISSN#1087-9323 NEWS TIPS If you think it's news, we probably do too! Newsroom phone: 512-268-7862 E-mail: news@haysfreepress. com Mail: P.O. Box 339, Buda, Texas 78610 CORRECTIONS Any erroneous reflection upon the character, standing or reputation of any person, firm or corporation which may appear in the pages of the Hays Free Press will be corrected upon being brought to the attention of the publisher. DEADLINES The deadline for display advertising and any contributed news copy in the Hays Free Press is 5 p.m. Friday the week prior to publication. The deadline for Letters to the Editor and classified word advertising in the Hays Free Press is noon Monday the week of publication, though we encourage readers and advertisers to observe the Friday deadline. LETTERS GUIDELINES We welcome locally written letters to the editor on timely topics of community interest. We ask that you keep them to about 350 words in length and that you not indulge in personal attacks on private individuals. Letters may be edited for brevity and clarity. All letters should be signed by the author and include a daytime phone number where the author can be contacted for verification. Letter writers are limited to one letter per month. Letters can be emailed to csb@haysfreepress.com HISTORY Founded April 10, 1903, by Thomas Fletcher Harwell as The Kyle News, with offices on the corner of Burleson and Miller Streets in the town's oldest remaining building. It merged into The Hays County Citizen in 1956. The paper consolidated with The Free Press in October, 1978. During its more than 100-year history the newspaper has maintained offices at more than a dozen locations in Kyle and Buda. BY MOSES LEOS M moses@haysfreepress.com One frequently used intersec- tion near the Buda/Kyle city lim- its is causing problems for com- mercial and non-commercial drivers alike. The intersection in question lies at the comer of the southbound Frontage Road of IH-35 and South Loop 4, less than a quarter mile from Exit 217. Several dozen 18-wheelers and commercial trucks make the right turn to access South Loop 4 each week And several of those end up toppling over each year, p~sumably as a result of the extreme turning radius at the intersection. The most recent incident on May 22 elicited responses from the public at large about the need to address the problem. "There is a truck in trouble at this same spot nearly every week The turn needs to be fixed if big trucks are going to contin- ue to turn there," Margaret New- tonWlllingham said on the Hays Free Press Facebook page. "I think that is the intersection that has the very steep ditch and every truck that turns too sharp right flips over," Rachel Plant said on the same Facebook page post. "It happens too frequently at that intersection." Kyle Police ChiefJeffBarnett is aware of the situation, as the in- tersection falls under his depart- ment's jurisdiction. "Every year, there seems to be five or six 18-wheelers that tip over at that intersection," Bar- nett said. According to accident re- port records obtained from the Kyle Police Department, four 18-wheelers overturned at the intersection in the past eight months. PEg members voting on new Early voting for two Ped- ernales Electric Cooperative (PEC) Board of Directors ends Friday, June 14. After that date, members will have a final chance to vote at the Co-op's annual meeting in Kyle on June 22. Members unable to attend the annual meeting can participate in the Co-op election by voting online or by completing and mailing in their ballot by June 14. Ballots should be returned to Survey & Ballot Systems (SBS); ballots will not be accepted at PEC offices. Members who need a replacement ballot may call SBS toll-free at (866) 909-3549 .a intersection PHOTO BY MOSES LEOS III At the northbound intersection of the IH-35 service road and South Loop 4, near the Buda/Kyle city limits, 18-wheelers frequently attempt to navigate the sharp right turn. But several times a year, drivers miscalculate and end up tipped over on their side. The narrow width and a deep culvert on the turn's interior contribute to the problem. TxDOT recently added some extra piping and widened the culvert; the agency also repaved around a portion of exposed pipe. TxDOT says it may add signage to warn drivers of the sharp turn. Problems arise from a tricky for track drivers, according to tersection. Texas Lehigh usesthe right tum, which large trucks New. Drivers are compelled to Robert S. Light Boulevard route, seem to have difficulty navigat- make the mm in a narrow fash- as it is an easier way to travel to ing around. As a result, numer- ion to avoid a collision. Howev- the plant. ous big rigs and commercial er, a steep ditch and a culvert on Cleanupofsuchaccidentsisa vehicles have tipped over at- the north side ofthe intersection time-consumingandcosflypro- tempting to make the ram. forces wheels of 18-wheelers to cess. According to New, South- Buda resident Ronnie New, be caught, toppling them over. side Wrecker charges anywhere owner of Southside Wrecker, Inexperience with the tttrn between $4,000 and $15,000 to said he has responded to many often leads to these accidents, upright 18-wheelers and com- of. these accidents. According Jeremy Cantu, who is in charge mercial vehicles, depending on to driver accounts of such in- of shipping at Texas Lehigh in the load. cidents, the narrow lane on the Buda, talked about the conun- The process to upright the two-way South Loop 4 is the pri- drum. trucks is a delicate one. Towing mary reason for many tip-overs. 'A lot of these accidents hap- companies must assess what the "[The intersection] is not a pen if a driver has not made the truck is carrying and how heavy [conventional] 90 degree turn; turn before," Cantu said. "Espe- it is. Otherwise, they run the risk drivers have to tum into oncom- cially if a driver is new and inex- of breaking the truck in half. ing traffic to make it," New said. perienced." "If a truck is over 80,000 Cars stopped at the intersec- Cantu went on to say that pounds, then we cannot pick it tion facing east along South Texas Lehigh has not had any of up," New said. "It's like picking Loop 4 create additional issues their trucks fall victim to the in- up a twenty pound water bal- loon- it is not going to work" Trucks ferrying hazardous materials are dealt with in a dif- ferent way. Companies have to call fire departments or haz-mat authorities to handle those situ- ations. During the last accident, it took Southside Wrecker four hours to completely clear South Loop 4. New said he does not see an immediate fix to the situation, as the only real solution is to widen the road. At the very least, he said signage to wam drivers about the issue would help. "Unfortunately, there is no way to know about it," New said. "GPS devices will not tell you about the ditch on the inside of the turn. Drivers newto the area do not find out about it until it is too late." On June 5, the Texas Depart- ment of Transportation (Tx- DOT)finished adding extra pip- ing and widening the culvert on the interior of the turn. In addi- tion, TxDOT repaved around a portion of exposed pipe, adding to the side of the road. "It should fix the issues with [South Loop 4]," Kelli Reyna, Public Information Officer for TxDOT Austin District said. TxDOT is also considering placing signs to warn mack driv- ers of the sharp turn. "Signage and delineation is always considered as a possible correction matter," Ben Engle- hardt, engineer for the South Tra- vis CountyTxDOT Office said. However, widening of the road is not something TxDOT planned, according to Engle- hardt. 'At this time, we have not looked into widening (South Loop 4)/he said. "We do not have any options to increase the width of the road." or send an email to support@ directvote.net. Results of the election will be announced during the annual meeting, which will be held June 22 at the Hays CISD Performing Arts Center in Kyle. Registration and mem- ber voting begins at 8 a.m. Voting closes at 10:30 a.m. Complete PEC election and annual meeting information is available at www.pec.coop. CARTS opens new service in Capital Area Rural Transpor- tation System (CARTS) opened a new bus route for the San Marcos Urban Transit District to Martindale and Redwood with a June 4 ribbon cutting cer- emony at the Marfindale City Hall. It marked the beginning a partnership with the cities to serve the area residents with affordable, convenient trans- portation. Martindale Mayor Doyle Mosier spoke about the new service before cutting the ribbon. This newmute will pro- vide service for the communi- ties of Martindale and Redwood by connecting them to the San Marcos bus system. Passengers can transfer to any of the San Marcos fixed routes to complete their trip to destinations such as the Outlet Malls, Texas State University, Wal-Mart and H-E-B. For more information about the new route or any of the CARTS services in Hays County call 512-805-7433 or visit us at RideCARTS.com. . k Edward. MAKING SENSE OF INVESTING + The key to buying life insurance is working with people you trust, a company you know, and getting a plan that meets your needs. That's why Germania Life is the right choice. We offer a wide variety of policies, flexible terms and range of premium options. And because we only insure Texans, your local Germania agent knows how Texans live. Contact your local Germania agent to help develop a plan that's right for this stage of your life - and beyond. Find out why, for over 115 years, Germania has been The Insurance Texans Trust. Hays Insurance 512-262-3388 (Buda) Dale Posey 512-398-5948 (Kyle) Germanialnsurance.com Lots of times, changes in life also affect your investments. That's why there's never been a better time to schedule your free portfolio review. We'll talk about the changes in your life, and help you decide whether it makes sense to revise your investments because of them. A portfolio review will help ensure your investments are keeping pace with your goals. Call your local financial advisor today. Janet Ross Financial Advisor 251N FM 1626 Bldg 2 Ste B Buda, TX 78610 512-312-2840 Shirley C Malone Financial Advisor 203 Railroad Street Suite 1B Buda, TX 78610 512-312-2332 www.edwardjones.com Member SIPC