CLEVELAND COUNTY, Okla. (KFOR) – The Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office, ODOT and other agencies are working together to make a dangerous stretch of highway safer for drivers.
State Highway 77 from 60th Street to Highway 39 has seen an uptick in the number of severe and fatal crashes.
“There’s terrible drivers, a lot of bad wrecks on the road,” said Zach Munday, a Cleveland County resident. “You hear an ambulance like every day. It goes through here like every day.”
Munday is among many drivers in Lexington who tries to avoid Highway 77 when possible.
Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen very often.
“I make my appointments at the doctor’s down here around 10 so I avoid the traffic,” said Lillian White, who lives in the area.
Drivers told KFOR this highway is notoriously dangerous and right now, construction isn’t making the situation any better.
ODOT is working on several projects to widen the highway, and while doing so, workers have reported many reckless drivers zipping through the construction zones.
“They’re speeding, yeah and they go around you know and they’re mad because you’re going the speed limit,” White said.
The Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office says speed, distracted and drunk driving have all led to an uptick in fatal wrecks on the road.
So now the agency and others are teaming up for Operation U.S. 77 Safe travel – cracking down on unsafe driving on a stretch already tough to navigate.
“It’s a four-lane then it goes to two, then it goes back to a four,” said White.
Drivers hope the completed construction along with this new safety effort will help make this highway less dangerous.
“Very stressful, just going to work every day,” said Munday.
“I’ll be glad when it’s over with,” White said.
ODOT says Highway 77 from 60th to Noble should be complete in four years.
The stretch in Slaughterville and Lexington is halfway finished and will continue throughout the year.