The in basket: Charelaine Hampton and Mike McDermott both
say they’ve seen drivers who are used to turning left from Myhre
Road in Silverdale to go downhill to Costco, Petsmart and the other
stores in that area pulling a U-turn just past the barrier the
county put there to prevent those left turns.
Those drivers then come back and turn right legally into the
access. But in the meantime, their U-turns create an accident
hazard, both said.
Charelaine says the U-turners use the exit from Harrison
Hospital’s Silverdale location and endanger drivers coming out that
exit. She sees it almost weekly, when she goes to the hospital for
a regular meeting, she said.
Mike described what he saw one day in October.
“As I turned from Ridgetop onto Myhre there were two cars in
front of me. The first one pulled into the center lane before the
barrier so they could still make the left turn. The other car went
just past the barrier and went into the bus stop on the right side
of the road and made a U-turn right in the middle of Myhre to get
back to the lane down to Costco.
“Obviously, this deterrent to turning left near Petsmart is
going to cause more problems if this is what people are going to
do,” he said.
“All people have to do is continue down Ridgetop another block
to Mickleberry and turn right,” he said.
The out basket: I would hope that the problem would abate in
time as more drivers learn those left turns are now forbidden and
plan an alternate route.
I was surprised to discover that just a couple hundred yards
further ahead on Myhre is another left turn that still is open that
leads down to Costco with hardly any greater travel time, though
getting back to Petsmart would require a little more extra time.
Until then, I thought it would be necessary to drive all the way
down to the next traffic signal on Myhre.
And by continuing straight on Ridgetop, as Mike suggested, a
driver not only can turn right at Mickelberry, but has two even
earlier right turn opportunities to get to where the now-forbidden
left turn used to take them.
Asked about the U-turns and other driver reactions to the
barrier, Kitsap County Traffic Engineer Jeff Shea chose to
reiterate the reasons the barrier went up in the first place.
“The Sheriff’s Department presented me with nine collision
reports for about a one-year period (2010) at this location,” he
said. ‘They asked if anything could be done to reduce the
“…Most of the collisions were the result of a motorist either
turning left out of the approach or turning left into the
approach. The logical counter-measure was to restrict the
vehicle movements to right-in right-out only.
“Knowing that a sign alone would not preclude motorists from
turning left, we decided to put the curbing in.
In addition to the sign and curbing, flexible delineators
(posts) were installed and the yellow striping was reconfigured to
an 18-inch solid line, which state law prohibits motorists from
“There are two (other) convenient accesses to this
commercial property, one further north on Myhre or eastbound
motorists on Ridgetop Blvd can stay on Ridgetop and make the first
“U-turns are not illegal if done in a safe manner, but if
problems arise we will address them.”
State law forbids U-turns in certain locations, like on hills,
but none of the prohibitions clearly apply on Myhre. Part of the
law says they are illegal, “where such vehicle cannot be seen by
the driver of any other vehicle approaching from either direction
within five hundred feet.”