Despite the two-way stop signs and blinking lights at the Route 202 and Falmouth Road intersection, there have been more than 25 crashes there the last three years. Emily Bader / Lakes Region Weekly

WINDHAM — A traffic light will be installed soon at the intersection of Route 202 and Falmouth Road after a delay due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to the project manager.

The installation comes after another accident at the intersection last week, when a car ran the posted stop sign on Falmouth Road and collided with a car traveling on Route 202, Police Chief Kevin Schofield said. Non-fatal injuries resulted.

The intersection is designated as a “high crash location” by the DOT, meaning that it has had eight or more crashes and a higher average crash rate for similar locations statewide, during a three-year period.

Of Windham’s seven state designated high crash intersections, the 202/Falmouth Road intersection comes in second after Roosevelt Trail/Tandberg Trail, but it has the highest injury rate of all locations in town.

From 2018 to 2020, there were 28 total vehicle accidents at the intersection, with 50% of them resulting in injuries. There were no fatalities at any of the locations.

While the intersection does not have the highest number of crashes over the same period for all high crash intersections in Cumberland County, it ranks third for the rate of injuries.

Schofield said that the town has worked with local state representatives and the state DOT to improve the intersection over the last four or five years, but without a traffic light, many of the same issues persist.

The two most significant factors leading to accidents there, Schofield said, “without reading every single report,” are failure to stop at the stop sign on Falmouth Road and cars stopped on Route 202 waiting to turn left onto Falmouth Road getting rear-ended.

The car that ran the stop sign had out-of-state plates, but Schofield said he wasn’t sure if unfamiliarity with the area was a factor. Courtesy of Kellie Glantz Sawyer

“Usually (it’s) fail to stop at a stop sign, or (it’s) driver distraction,” he said.

Photos of the most recent accident, on Oct. 7, posted to a Windham community Facebook page drew the ire of hundreds of residents who expressed their outrage that a traffic signal had not yet been installed at the intersection.

“How many accidents does it take for something more to be done?” said Kellie Glantz Sawyer, who posted the photos of the incident.

“That has been one of Windham’s worst intersections for probably 40-plus years,” said James Melvin

DOT began plans to install a traffic light following a public hearing last April and awarded the $161,616 bid to Moulison Heavy Electrical of Biddeford on July 1 of this year.

Project manager Jerry Dostie said that the July 28 start date was pushed back to this month after production of one of the necessary parts was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Dostie said that although the project has a completion date set for Dec. 31, the installation is fairly quick and he suspects the project will be completed sometime next month.

As of Wednesday morning, Schofield said he received notice from the town’s Public Works director that excavation for the traffic poles will begin soon.

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