NORTH FORK – Both drivers walked away without injury this evening after one of them failed to stop for the posted stop sign at the intersection of Roads 225 and 274 in North Fork.
Jason Mayer, 43, of North Fork, was coming south on Road 274 in a 1988 Toyota pickup just before 5:30 p.m. and had just pulled up to the stop sign at Road 225. Mayer then pulled out to turn left when a 2017 Audi, driven by Drew Straus, 33, of Los Angeles, blew through the stop sign on westbound Road 225.
The Audi and the Toyota collided in the intersection, causing major damage to the front of the pickup, and smashing up the passenger side of the Audi.
Mayer said he looked to the left before entering the intersection, and that there was no car visible as he pulled out. A witness at the scene agreed that she didn’t see the car either, according to CHP.
The driver of the Audi told CHP that he thought the stop sign “was for the other road,” and that he was going between 30 and 40 mph. Mayer, however, said the Audi “came flying over the hill.”
Neither driver was injured in the crash, nor was the passenger in the Audi.
This intersection has been the subject of heated debate in recent months as the Board of Supervisors considered putting a roundabout in place and many locals strenuously objected, calling the project a ridiculous waste of money.
The intersection has been a three-way stop for many years, with eastbound traffic being the only leg without a stop sign. The design allowed large trucks headed to the lumber mill – now closed for 25 years – to pass through without having to stop and start on the uphill grade.
Future roundabout or no, the problem at this intersection continues to be drivers – especially those who are not locals – coming westbound from South Fork, over the rise, and failing to stop at the stop sign. And the design of the proposed roundabout does not eliminate the “hump” in the road.
Just as the tow truck was hooking up to the second car and CHP was preparing to clear the scene, another driver blew through the stop sign. Fortunately, that failure to yield did not result in yet another accident.