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How will DelDOT stop Harbeson crashes?

December 29, 2017

I am writing this letter in response to the small article in the paper Dec. 15. This was a picture of the wall at the Harbeson Cemetery in Harbeson.

I want to give you some background information about the cemetery. The Harbeson Cemetery is a not-for-profit group of volunteers, with board members who serve to make sure that the cemetery is kept in good shape, grass gets cut, clean out old flowers, etc., and just good care of the grounds. This cemetery is over 175 years old.

Funds to keep the grounds in good standing come from selling lots at a very good price, and when someone is buried there is an opening fee of $175, and sometimes families will send a donation to help with the expense to maintain the grounds.

Now for all of the crashes, just in the past two months the cemetery wall has been damaged three times, and we have only caught one driver, and that driver would have walked away also.

He did not stop after hitting the wall or pull over in front of the Harbeson Hall. No, he drove down to the chicken factory, almost made it to the plant, but his back wheel started to fall off and he had to stop about 100 feet from the entrance to the plant. Also people did see it happen, and the police were called and the cemetery members were able to get his insurance information and his insurance paid for the repair.

Now for this last crash that happened Dec. 6, we think some time round 9:15-9:45 p.m., this driver has done nothing to contact the cemetery or the police; this driver not only hit the wall but he rode on top of the wall with one wheel riding inside the cemetery over graves, and the only type of trailer that could do that is a dump type of trailer like the bone/fat trailer that comes to pick up the bone and fat at the plant.

So far the plant has been no help. The cost to repair the wall this time will be about $6,000, and the money to fix the wall will have to come out of the cemetery account which will leave this account very low.

So the cost to maintain the grounds could have problems, and the white stones on the side wall on Route 9, you can no longer get them, so now what? This problem has really become a major problem and DelDOT says they have a fix.

How is their fix, moving the road over 10 feet, doing away with the right-hand turn lane, going to stop the crashes when the drivers ride on top of the wall?

We would love to hear from your readers on how DelDOT's fix is going to stop all the crashes since the truck drivers do not know how to drive. And one more big thing - all of the tractor-trailer drivers for Allen Harim are independent drivers, not employees of Allen Harim, so this makes it even harder to find them and get them to pay for the damage they do.

John Kane
treasurer
Harbeson Cemetery

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