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County to discuss road safety improvements
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Effingham County commissioners are expected to approve a new bid for safety improvements on three Effingham County roads, after the original contractors backed out.

In a letter to the county, the original contractor, Diversified Traffic Services of Blackshear, said it could not comply with the contract’s requirements. There were two bidders on the project, and the commissioners are expected to vote today whether to approve the bid from Middle Georgia-Signs-Designeffex.

The new signs, rumble strips and one flashing light will be placed on three roads — McCall, Little McCall and Blue Jay — covering nearly 23 miles.

Work to be done on Blue Jay Road includes new highway signs, rumble strips and a new flashing light at its intersection with Highway 17. The new signs will be placed along the 9.87-mile stretch of Blue Jay Road from Highway 21 to Highway 17.

New signs will be posted along Little McCall Road from Highway 119 to McCall Road and on McCall Road from Blue Jay Road to Highway 21.

The new total bid for the work is $48,029. The state Department of Transportation will reimburse the county for work up to $57,278.

“We will be reimbursed 100 percent,” county public works engineer Toss Allen said.

Allen said after paring down the original estimate from the DOT, he would like to add back under a change order other safety features left out, such as rumble strips and additional signs.

“We tried to value engineer this so we would come under budget,” Allen said. “There were some signs that were left out. There’s nothing we’re doing that is not needed.

Along with the items under the change order, the estimated price of the work is $54,446, still under the DOT’s threshold for complete reimbursement.

The work comes under a project for high-risk rural roads and Allen said there is no road striping to be done on Blue Jay, McCall or Little McCall. The DOT came back with a revised contract for a flashing light at Blue Jay and 17.

“This is a stopgap measure until we can get a permanent fix in,” Allen said.

Work on the improvements will begin 10 days after a notice to proceed is received, and the contractor will have 30 days to finish the job.

“They only have until the end of the year to complete the job,” Allen said.