Fatal wreck prompts look at school traffic

Published 1:07 am Tuesday, March 5, 2019

A wreck at the rear entrance of Andalusia Elementary School last week that claimed one life and left a parent seriously injured has prompted local school and police officials to look at ways to improve traffic flow.

According to the Andalusia Police Department, a 2007 GMC Yukon was exiting the school when it collided with a 2017 Dodge minivan. The driver of the SUV was flown by LifeFlight for further treatment. The driver of the van, Robert Glenn Thorpe, 87 of Andalusia, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Superintendent Ted Watson said he has spoken with Police Chief Paul Hudson and Assistant Chief Paul Dean in the past week about ways to improve the safety of the rear entrance.

“They are putting together a proposal for us,” Watson told board members in a special meeting Monday night.

The proposals include traffic lights and/or stop signs, Watson said, as well as adding a track that would get waiting vehicles off the Moore Road entrance more quickly.

“Hopefully, we have enough room to get Moore Road clear,” Watson said.

The projected cost is $40,000, he said.

“They will have some drawings for us at the next meeting.

In other business, the board:

• Agreed to purchase a total of 10 hoists or scene battens for the stage in the new auditorium. The board voted 3-1 in favor. Board member David McCalman, who voted against the purchase, said he does not oppose the purchase, but wanted to add the additional battens after the main project was finished. Board member Amy Dugger wasn’t present.