Morongo Valley, CA
One of the major roads in the desert will be under construction soon, and police say the purpose is safety.
Caltrans held a meeting Wednesday night to talk about the project on State Route 62.
You’re climbing elevation as you cruise into the high desert.
State Route 62 is a busy road.
We asked drivers if they also think it’s dangerous.
"Absolutely, you have to keep your radar on, and keep proper following distance, people move pretty quick out here," said Morongo Valley resident, Sean Enright.
The town of Morongo Valley is right after you exit the windy pass.
"It is quite dangerous, and it is quite crowded. There have been so many accidents," said Monte George of Morongo Valley.
Caltrans and California Highway Patrol are focusing on this stretch of road between Morongo Valley and Yucca Valley.
"In 2013 alone we had 5 incidents or fatal collisions where people lost their lives," said Officer Simon Miller with California Highway Patrol.
The following year, Caltrans installed plastic pylons as a way to stop head-on crashes.
California Highway Patrol says it’s working.
"Now we have far less, in fact last year in 2016 we had only one and it is not related to what we used to see here," said Officer Miller.
Now Caltrans will be replacing those plastic poles with concrete barriers.
"Because it’s going to save on people getting hurt, and if someone comes over into another lane, they won’t be able to come over to a different lane," said Morongo Valley resident, Karen George.
The $3.4 million project also includes another traffic light.
Residents also hope it puts the brakes on fast drivers.
"Any kind of traffic signal they can add to help slow people down, to give the kids distance and time to walk across the street is always helpful," said Enright.
Construction could begin on SR62 as early as April.