New North Baltimore roundabout has wrong way driver scares - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

New North Baltimore roundabout has wrong way driver scares

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NORTH BALTIMORE, OHIO - The first snowfall on the way means drivers need to get ready for a season of slushy, slick roads.

It's an additional hazard for people in a Wood County community who are still learning to navigate a new roundabout.

The North Baltimore police chief says, knock on wood, there have been no accidents yet since the new State Route 18 opened to traffic, but there have been quite a few wrong way scares on the roundabout.

There are almost 4,000 roundabouts in the U.S., but this is the first one on a state route in this region.

North Baltimore is a railroad hub. Thanks to the CSX Intermodal facility, the town also sees a lot of trucks.

It has been one month since the new State Route 18 opened to drivers.

It diverts truck traffic from I-75 around the downtown area.

"It's nice. It takes a lot of traffic out of Main Street," says Jim Gray who lives in North Baltimore.

On issue though is the new roundabout.

"It is the talk of the town," says Police Chief Allan Baer.

The police chief says officers have been giving out warnings but no tickets yet during the learning curve.

"We were definitely having traffic violations. People were going left of center, going into oncoming traffIc," says Baer.

13 ABC cameras were rolling when the driver of a pick-up truck turned left and went the wrong way even though all signs say to go right.

The chief also says a big problem is people stopping in the middle of the roundabout.

"The concept of a roundabout is if you get there first you have the right of way," says Baer. "You don't have to stop once you're in the circle, you don't have to stop for cars that are approaching the roundabout."

13 ABC cameras also saw multiple examples of drivers getting used to the roundabout and keeping traffic flowing.

"It does flow very well when people understand it," says Baer.

"They're lucky I haven't seen any wrecks out there but there's a few cases where it has been close," says Gray. "Everybody's just got to watch what they're doing."

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