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Family calls for dangerous Knoxville-area exit ramp to be altered

It's easy for people to point the finger at inexperience and recklessness whenever a young driver is killed in a car accident, but that isn't always the case. Sometimes roads are designed poorly and are conducive to accidents happening. Knoxville residents are fighting to do something about an especially scary stretch of road.

Residents gathered at the exit ramp from the Pellissippi Parkway to Hardin Valley Road in Knoxville recently to remember a 21-year-old local college student who was killed in a car accident last year.

According to reports, the man's car was exiting the parkway when his car ended up in the oncoming traffic lane of cars getting onto the parkway. His car was struck by a truck, killing him. According to people at the memorial gathering, the exit ramp has too sharp of a curve, which means cars on it could easily swerve into oncoming traffic.

Just recently, a three-car accident unfolded on the ramp. Six people were injured. Tennessee Department of Transportation officials told a local news station that the department is always looking at potential trouble spots, but there was no word on if any specific modifications were planned for the road. One person at the memorial gathering said there should be a stop light put in or the road should be widened.

Families who lose a loved one because a road is poorly maintained or designed may have recourse for getting damages to cover medical expenses or pain and suffering. Governments are supposed to serve and protect their citizens, and that includes making sure that roads are safe.

Source: WATE, "Memorial for Knoxville college student killed in car wreck prompts possible road changes," Hayley Harmon, Feb. 24, 2013

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