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Traffic light to be installed at site of Saturday’s deadly limo crash

07/21/2015 12:07 PM |

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A traffic light will been installed at the intersection of Route 48 and Depot Lane in Cutchogue, the location of Saturday’s limousine crash that killed four women, Legislator Al Krupski said.

“A light isn’t going to prevent tragedies from happening,” he said. “Human error is always a factor.” But he added the light will “help slow things down.”

Mr. Krupski said plans for the light had already been approved prior to Saturday’s deadly collision between a limousine making a U-turn and a pickup truck.

Four Smithtown women were killed in the crash, with another four injured, one seriously. Both drivers were also injured, police said.

Prosecutors say the driver of the pickup truck, local businessman Steve Romeo, had been drinking before the crash and briefly walked away from the scene after smashing into the limousine. He has been charged with misdemeanor driving while intoxicated, though prosecutors said they expect to upgrade the charges soon.

Police said the limo driver would not be held criminally liable for the crash.

Mr. Krupski told The Suffolk Times he had reached out to the county’s Department of Public Works in May after a constituent raised safety concerns about the intersection. But the county had already completed studies for the light and determined it was needed, he said.

“The data to put a light in was already there,” he said. “This isn’t the result of a tragedy. This was based more on routine analysis.”

Prior to May, the county had not received a complaint about the intersection since 2002, Mr. Krupski added. The traffic light will be installed after PSEG raises wires around the intersection, allowing the county to put larger utility poles in place. A contract is already in place for its construction, he said.

Mr. Krupski said the light should be finished by late fall.

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