Orange County, California

HomeCaliforniaOrange County

Email John Bisnar John Bisnar on LinkedIn John Bisnar on Twitter John Bisnar on Facebook
John Bisnar
John Bisnar
Contributor •

A "dangerous" California Highway

Comments Off

The death of Gillian Cichowski-a teacher; an active community leader; and, mother of two children, who died in February of 1992, while attempting to make a left hand turn on Route 17 prompted the California Senate to pass a resolution naming a bridge over Route 17 the ‘Gillian Cichowski Memorial Overcrossing Bridge’, and her death gave impetus to the building of the overpass that replaced the left turn at the intersection where she died in an automobile accident.

Route 17 may only be 27 miles in length, but it has certainly earned its reputation of being one of the most notoriously dangerous 27 highway miles in California. Constructed in 1930, and consisting of a combination of sharp turns, blind curves and wandering animals, Route 17 inspired some locals to name of section of Route 17 the ‘Valley Surprise’. Adding to the already dangerous nature of Route 17 is the fact that in the area of the Santa Cruz Mountains, rain and snow can render the highway very slippery. And, because drivers are required to negotiate sudden changes in traffic speeds on Route 17, there have been many accidents on this stretch of road-some fatal.

While 2007 has not experienced normal rainfall, previously heavy rains, causing large cracks and potholes caused CALTRANS to authorize emergency repairs at a cost of $200 million dollars. And, I believe California drivers deserve safe roads any time of the year!