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March 23, 2012

News

Motorist access through McCoy’s

Main Gate: Stay in your lane

The new access procedures at the Main Gate are working well overall, but Fort McCoy Police say some confusion still exists regarding turning into the Main Gate area.

Sgt. David Hansen, the Fort McCoy traffic accident investigator, said the difficulty arises from motorists exiting from State Highway 21 and South 8th Avenue, roads that have single lanes for traffic heading in each direction (east and west), and turning onto the Main Gate access road, a road that has two lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction.
PHOTO: Traffic cones are placed from South 8th Avenue to the Main Gate access road. Photo by Rob Schuette
Sgt. David Hansen, Fort McCoy traffic accident investigator, places traffic cones from South 8th Avenue to the Main Gate access road to help motorists stay in their lanes. (Photo by Rob Schuette)

State law and Fort McCoy traffic regulations state traffic entering onto a road that has two or more lanes heading in the same direction must initially turn into the closest lane from which they are turning.

Consequently, motorists coming from the Sparta direction (west) onto Fort McCoy first must turn completely into the west (closest) lane when proceeding toward the Main Gate. Hansen said traffic traveling from the Tomah direction (east) first must turn completely into the east lane when proceeding toward the Main Gate.

“After you have turned into the proper lane, you can consider changing lanes if the traffic flow safely allows it,” Hansen said. “You must ensure it is safe to turn into the other lane and signal your intentions. This is both for entering and leaving the post through the Main Gate.”

Fort McCoy police placed traffic cones directly off of South 8th Avenue to prevent motorists from making an improper turn from South 8th Avenue, traveling west from the J Street direction or traveling east from the South O Street direction, onto the Main Gate access road, he said.

Motorists who don’t obey these laws increase the risk they will cause traffic accidents and be held liable for the accidents because of their actions, Hansen said.

In addition, motorists increase the risk they might receive citations that could subtract points from their state driver’s licenses — and affect their installation driving privileges — or face fines.

“The same laws apply to driving onto Fort McCoy as they would if motorists are facing the same situation in Tomah or Sparta,” Hansen said. “Following these rules will keep everyone safe,” and help keep the traffic flow moving to allow everyone to get their final destination in a timely manner.

The new entrance/exit procedures have been in place for about three weeks.

Authorized personnel and visitors can enter or exit through the Main Gate on a 24/7 basis. Credentialed Department of Defense personnel also can enter through Gate 20 from 5 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays. All motorists can exit through Gate 20 when it’s open.

Anyone in the Fort McCoy community with questions about the new traffic access procedures can call Hansen at 608-388-2044 or send e-mail to david.b.hansen8.civ@mail.mil.

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