MDT Looking To Make Changes At Busy Intersection - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

MDT Looking To Make Changes At Busy Intersection

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BOZEMAN -

Montana Department of Transportation is looking to change an increasingly busy intersection northwest of Bozeman where a woman died in a two vehicle crash Wednesday.

MDT is finishing up a traffic study at the intersection of Frontage and the Valley Center Road spur.

"As a part of an engineering study, we will take those numbers and perform some analysis to determine what we should do to address the crashes at that are occurring at that location," said Jeff Ebert, MDT Butte District administrator.

Montana Highway Patrol said there were 11 crashes at that intersection between 2011 and 2013.

Wednesday, 30-year-old Kari Friedman from Bozeman died after pulling out in front of a Dodge Ram.

But, MHP records show she is only the second person that has died at this intersection in the last four years.

Sergeant Pat McCarthy said it comes down to paying attention when behind the wheel.

"Drivers need to pay attention to what they are doing in the vehicle, try to limit their distractions a little bit, if possible, put down the cell phone, pay attention to what they are doing, not talking on the phone, not adjusting the radio," said McCarthy.

With the Interstate 90 interchange construction continuing, McCarthy said the 60 mph road is getting more congested.

"People are rerouting to the Frontage Road to avoid driving through that construction zone and Bozeman continues to grow so there is a lot more traffic there," said McCarthy.

MDT said they know this is a dangerous intersection.  In the last five years, they've installed turn lanes and flashing lights.  Ebert said MDT will probably do even more at the intersection.

"The two recommendations I'm aware of are either putting in a traffic signal at that location or the other option would be to close that intersection either temporarily or as a long term fix," said Ebert.

Ebert said the problem with installing a traffic light at the Frontage/Valley Center Road intersection is it is right next to a railroad track.

MDT said the final study on the intersection could be published in the coming months. They don't know when changes would be made.

MHP is still investigating Wednesday's crash.

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