Deadly Accidents Increase On Arkansas Highway 226
(Craighead County, AR) A stretch of Arkansas Highway 226 in Craighead County has quickly gained a deadly reputation.
In late October, four people were killed in separate crashes in just one week.
Gerald Goza, a firefighter/EMT in Cash, Arkansas checks his medical supplies and rescue tools frequently.
He knows he may need them again soon on Highway 226, “We’ve had several accidents in the past, but they have picked up within the last month or so.”
Gerald Goza says knew one of the victims, “It bothers me equally, if I know them or if I don’t, because I do know that there’s a family out there grieving.”
Captain Jim Howington, with Arkansas State Police Troop D, says the problem on 226 is getting worse, “And it’s like a speedway out there. A lot of Little Rock traffic that comes north out of Little Rock, coming to Jonesboro, uses Highway 226.”
He says there are several reasons for the spike in deadly crashes.
He blames an unfinished section of Highway 67 that forces drivers to exit on to 226.
From there the highway goes from a new four lane highway, four changes in the speed limit and back to a narrow two lane highway.
State Police stepped up patrols to stop speeders but Captain Howington says cars and big rigs are still following too close and going too fast.
Gerald Goza says drivers just aren’t paying attention and they’re paying with their lives, “We went to one where the person admitted to texting on the cell phone.”
Arkansas State Police encourage drivers to slow down, maintain a safe distance between vehicles and always wear a seat belt.