Signs put up to warn drivers of dangerous curve

BURNSIDE, LA (WAFB) - Hours after a 5-year-old boy was killed, neighbors say police were back working another accident in the exact same spot.

Neighbors say it just proved their point; they say caution signs are needed on Highway 44. Tuesday morning, they found state workers adding signs, warning drivers to slow down in the S-curve there.

The signs were put up on LA 44 near Burnside.

"We had curve signs a few years ago. They all got knocked down...accidents...and not replaced," said Jean Paul Robert, a neighbor.

Those accidents have left cars in his front yard, tire marks in neighbors yards and poles and mailboxes knocked over.

"Had a car that ramped the culvert, hit the telephone pole, lit the tree on fire," Robert said, describing one of the accidents.

Neighbors sent the pictures on the right of the signs put out by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development.

They say they've been asking for months for something to be done, especially since they've had seven accidents there in the past month.

One neighbor says when the speed limit was lower, they didn't have as many crashes; but now that people can speed through, they see accidents every week.

"It's a danger. I don't let my kids come in front yard and play.  I've had cars flipping all through my yard," said neighbor Jean Paul Robert.

State Rep. Clay Schexnayder, R-Sorrento, said those signs are not enough, but it's a start.  He's asked the Department of Transportation to put rumble strips and red reflectors in the curve as well.

"I been hollering about this road since 1994," said Dempsy Pendarvis, who lives in the area.

Those rumble strips are in the middle of the road, but Pendarvis says they need to go near the shoulder - or what there is of the shoulder, as well.

"Put some alert bumps. When you driving brrmmmp - oh curve. It'll get your attention," Pendarvis said.

He says that may give drivers a chance, instead of dropping off the side of the road.

Others want the speed limit on the road to be reduced. A parish councilman who also lives in the area says last year it was 45 miles per hour along the stretch, but then got raised to 55. Some would like to see the state put an actual shoulder on the roadway.

The Louisiana State Police said 5-year-old Makell Andrews was killed Monday when his father, Anthony Andrews, 30, of Sorrento, went off the road in the curve Monday.

Troopers said Andrews overcorrected and the pickup flipped. They added the boy was not properly restrained at the time of the crash.

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