KDOT recommends increasing enforcement along K-254

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BEL AIRE, Kan. (KAKE) -

The Kansas Department of Transportation recommends increasing enforcement along K-254 to reduce incidents on that expressway.

"We certainly want to do what we can to make this corridor safer," said Steven Buckley, state highway engineer for KDOT. 

After a study with data from 2014 to 2018, KDOT provided these recommendations.

"We're installing some additional signage to improve the safety, talking about things like R-CUTS (Restricted Crossing U-Turns), and probably at this point, most importantly, is really encouraging additional enforcement," said Buckley.

The study found that the average speeds on K-254 were about 71 miles per hour. The speed limit is 70.

KDOT does not recommend reducing the speed limit.

During a meeting in Bel Aire by the K-254 Corridor Development Association, other ideas were provided by community members.

Among those ideas were adding stop lights and traffic signals, adding more turn lanes, and constructing overpasses. 

"I'm grateful that things are happening. I would like to see it made into an interstate probably or stop lights put on, kind of like Kellogg had," said Ashley Owen, driver from Bel Aire.

Owen also created a petition after three people died on K-254 earlier this month.

KDOT said over half of all deadly crashes involve people not wearing seatbelts.

The state average for seatbelt usage is 84-percent, but pick-up truck drivers tend to have a lower rate. 

"We're at a point where there's just a certain part of the population that they're just not going to wear their seatbelts, but the bottom line is seatbelts save lives," said Buckley.

An enforcement saturation is planned for K-254, from Wichita to El Dorado, April 12-14.