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Ahwatukee residents want traffic light at intersection after series of crashes

Posted at 5:22 AM, May 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-25 08:22:10-04

AHWATUKEE, AZ — People living in Ahwatukee say the intersection of 17th Avenue and Liberty Lane is too dangerous and want the city to take action. This comes after nearly a dozen crashes in the past 13 months.

High schoolers Colin and Cam'ryn were driving home on Loop 202 the night of May 4. They had just gotten off at 17th Avenue, which is the last exit into Ahwatukee.

"Once we got like in the middle of Liberty, this car came out of nowhere and I turned and I saw the lights and it just... hit us," says Colin.

It caused the Jeep they were in to start spinning. ABC15 received pictures showing the damage from the impact.

"They ran through the stop sign probably going 65 to 70 mph,” says Colin.

"I needed help getting out of the car because my door was jammed and I couldn't really feel my leg," says Cam'ryn.

Their crash is one of 10 since last April, with five of them happening in just the last eight weeks. Many of the crashes have resulted in injuries.

"Sometimes police don't come for a long time,” says Bernadine Sadauskas, a neighbor who lives nearby. She says accidents at that intersection are so common, that she and her neighbors are always ready to spring into action and help those involved.

"Make sure that they’re OK, set them on the street, go get them water bottles, kind of calm them down," says Sadauskas.

"I think we ought to be looking at least one or more stoplights along here,” says Brian Symes, an Ahwatukee Foothills Village Planning Committee member.

"Something has to be done; we can't leave it this way. We can't continue this way and have the risk that we have right now,” says Symes, who says he has brought the problem up to the city council.

Neighbors say while they wait for the city to do something, they will continue taking action when the next crash happens.

"They got hit in the intersection and this car right here spun out, you can kind of see both tire tracks and this truck came right here and hit the wall,” says Sadauskas.

The city’s Street Transportation Department says a developer has included adding a traffic light at the intersection in their project plan. That plan is still being reviewed and there is no timeline on when it would be put into place.