Buffalo Grove sees small dip in crashes, new most dangerous intersection
Buffalo Grove saw a small decline in the number of traffic crashes in the community last year, as well as a change at the top of the village's annual list of most dangerous intersections.
In a presentation to the village board this month, Sgt. Mike Rodriguez from the Buffalo Grove Police Department's traffic unit said police responded to 1,422 crashes last year, down from 1,437 in 2013.
The total number of roadway crashes -- as opposed to crashes occurring on private property -- was 1,048, a decrease of 2.5 percent from 2013, he said.
Topping the list of most dangerous intersections was Buffalo Grove Road and short Aptakisic Road, which saw 24 crashes last year, including six involving reported injuries, officials said. The primary cause of 19 of those crashes were drivers failing to yield to oncoming traffic while turning left.
"Having 24 crashes may not seem like a significant number, but it is," Rodriguez said. "It is the highest crash location that we have in the village."
Village Trustee Mike Terson and other officials are optimistic that changes to the intersection planned as part of the Weiland/Lake-Cook improvement project will make it safer.
"I think that a lot of times people don't realize, if they are making that left off short Aptakisic Road, the speed of cars coming from the south. And that curve is hard to judge," Terson said.
Buffalo Grove Road at short Aptakisic Road replaces the intersection of Lake-Cook Road at McHenry Road at the top of the village's list. The latter finished tied for fourth in this year's rankings, with 11 crashes, one involving injury.
The rest of the top five are Buffalo Grove Road and Dundee Road, with 14 crashes, including four with reported injuries; Lake-Cook Road and Arlington Heights Road, 13 crashes, three involving injuries; and Lake-Cook Road and McHenry Road, 11 crashes, two with injuries.
Village Manager Dane Bragg said the Weiland/Lake-Cook project should also address two other intersections that made this year's list: Buffalo Grove Road and Lake-Cook Road, and McHenry Road and Lake-Cook Road.
One statistic that Rodriguez proudly pointed to was the seat belt compliance rate of drivers in Buffalo Grove: 98.1 percent.
"That comes with a lot of education," he said, crediting a village ordinance that allows police officers to pull over drivers for not wearing their seat belts.
Rodriguez said police hope to achieve a similar rate for passenger seat belt compliance and also are keeping an eye out for distracted drivers. A recent study showed that nearly half of all adult drivers text and drive, he said.
In addition to the Weiland/Lake-Cook project, Bragg said the village is talking with the Illinois Department of Transportation regarding turn lane modifications at Buffalo Grove and Dundee roads.
"We look at the enforcement side -- and appreciate Mike (Rodriguez) and his team and everything they do to keep pushing that and enforcing that -- but we also have been working very diligently on the engineering side to get some of those intersections resolved long term for better safety," Bragg said.
Buffalo Grove's most dangerous intersectionsA list of the five Buffalo Grove intersections that saw the most crashes in 2014, as well as how many involved injury and the leading cause of the collisions.
1. Buffalo Grove Road and short Aptakisic Road: 24 crashes, six with injuries reported, 19 caused by failure to yield while turning left.
2. Buffalo Grove Road and Dundee Road: 14 crashes, four with injuries reported, eight caused by failure to yield while turning left.
3. Lake-Cook Road and Arlington Heights Road: 13 crashes, three with injuries reported, nine caused by failure to yield while turning left.
4 (tie). Buffalo Grove Road at Lake-Cook Road: 11 crashes, one with injuries reported, five caused by failure to yield while turning left and five by rear-end collision.
4 (tie). Lake-Cook Road and McHenry Road: 11 crashes, two with injuries reported, four caused by failure to yield while turning left.
Source: village of Buffalo Grove