Safety Concerns Continue After Two Deadly Crashes At Skiatook Intersection

Sunday, April 26th 2020, 10:25 pm
By: Amelia Mugavero

Skiatook, OK -

Dawna Penkert lives close to the intersection of Highway 20 and 52nd West Avenue. Penkert has witnessed several fatal crashes, including two on Saturday. 

"I've lived here for seven or eight years and there are accidents all the time at this intersection,” Penkert said. “We go a mile or two out of the way just to avoid that intersection even though we live just a block from it.”

No traffic lights and a hill for oncoming westbound traffic create a dangerous intersection, according to the City of Skiatook.

The city said they've been working for years to make it safer, but the process has been complicated.

Skiatook City Manager Dan Yancey said he and ODOT have been working on a plan since 2014.

​According to Yancey, the last thing they need is 50 feet on each side of the road, but that land is owned by the Osage Nation. ​

The city and ODOT are currently at a standstill with The Bureau of Indian Affairs. Yancey said the entire process has already cost ODOT over $100,000.

"There's no reason that you should ever take 3 1/2 years to acquire a piece of property to widen the road for safety reasons. That's just unacceptable," Yancey said. ​"I've just had enough. Enough is enough. We had two people die on the same day with two separate accidents. Something has to be done.”

Penkert would also like to see something change so she does not have to be close to a dangerous intersection.

​"It is sad. People are dying,” Penkert said. “I don't know how many more people are going to have to die to do what they said they were going to.” 

We plan on contacting The Bureau of Indian Affairs Monday morning.