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Serious Route 4 crash raises safety questions

Union Leader Correspondent

February 19. 2018 9:03PM
Officials are going to examine the safety of an intersection on Route 4 that injured seven people earlier this month. The driver of this Jeep was taken to the hospital with broken bones and possibly life-threatening injuries. (Courtesy of Durham Police Department)

DURHAM — Officials are examining the safety of a busy intersection on Route 4 in Durham after a four-vehicle crash that injured seven people earlier this month.

Durham Police Chief David Kurz said Monday there were 30 crashes at the Madbury Road intersection in the last five years.

That number does not include a Feb. 9 crash caused by Eddie Watson, 59, of Barnstead, who ran a red light and hit a Jeep and Toyota Corolla with his 2007 Western Star semi truck.

A Chevy Traverse with five people in it was also involved in that crash.

Meredith Hamel, 47, of Barrington, who suffered multiple broken bones and was sent to the hospital with possibly life-threatening injuries, has been released from Portsmouth Regional Hospital.

“I think she is a fortunate woman,” Kurz said.

Kurz said the serious nature of this crash, which shut down Route 4 for over five hours, is what prompted him to approach the town administrator and ask the traffic committee to look at the safety of the intersection.

Kurz said they will have to work with the state Department of Transportation because the state is responsible for Route 4.

Town Administrator Todd Selig said it makes sense to talk about any safety issues related to the intersection.

“We want to know, ‘Is there a pattern of accidents that have occurred there?’” Selig said.

Selig said they will meet again on March 1 at 9 a.m. in city council chambers. The meeting is open to the public, he said.

Anyone with concerns about the intersection can contact Kurz at

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