Radar signs go up near Lake Poinsett

Brookings County Sheriff's Office photo

BROOKINGS – A pair of speed-indicating radar signs have been installed on South Lake Drive near Lake Poinsett after traffic concerns were raised by some residents.

The signs, which were installed on June 15, came in response to data from a two-week period in which a radar recorder was deployed to study traffic patterns, according to a news release from the Brookings County Sheriff’s Office. The radar recorded the speed, direction and time motorists were traveling on the roadway.

Results showed that almost 20,000 vehicles had passed the recorder, according to Assistant Sheriff Scott Sebring in the release. Most motorists followed the speed limit, but a few exceeded the 35-mph speed zone, with several traveling nearly 80 mph.

This data, along with other factors, were used to apply for a South Dakota Office of Highway Safety grant and funding from the Brookings County Commission to install speed-indicating signs, according to the release. Two signs were purchased by the sheriff’s office and installed by the Brookings County Highway Department.

The new signs indicate a motorist’s speed, and if the 35-mph speed limit is exceeded, the signs flash red and blue lights in an attempt to slow the motorist, according to the release. These signs also provide the same recording capability as the radar recorder, so their effectiveness can be evaluated later.

“This is part of Sheriff (Marty) Stanwick’s long-term plan to make Brookings County roadways more safe and slow motorists to the indicated speed limit,” the release says.

Other areas are also being evaluated for similar signage in the future.