Standing water partially to blame for Hale Interchange accidents

Locals believe construction zone is dangerous

The Milwaukee County Sheriff said standing water was partially to blame for the high number of accidents over the past week along the Hale Interchange.

The interchange in Greenfield normally gets a lot of traffic, but after six crashes in one week, including a pair of jack-knifed semis and four injuries, driver Cynthia Maxwell believes the construction zone is dangerous. 

"It's constantly braking, braking, braking. It's ridiculous," Maxwell said. "The semis take up all the road."

Milwaukee County Sheriff Richard Schmidt said deputies and WISDOT worked realized last week's rain caused water to run off onto the expressway that connects I-894 with I-43.

"The conditions weren't optimal," Schmidt said.

The slick conditions were coupled with already narrowed lanes for road work.

Schmidt said the problem was fixed Wednesday to prevent future incidents.

"They put etching into the concrete so the water now has a way to filter through there," Schmidt said. "The construction crews put some pumps in there and that should significantly take care of this issue."

Schmidt believes the renovations will tremendously reduce accidents, but drivers speeds were also to blame.

"The other issue is you've got to pay attention to your surroundings," Schmidt said.

"Drive slow," Maxwell urged. "Be cautious and watch all over because you're not the only one on the road."

The Hale Interchange is under construction for resurfacing and to add another lane. Work is expected to wrap up in October.

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