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Changes to state highways cause confusion

February 07, 2013|by Sia Nyorkor | KWCH 12 Eyewitness News

(RENO COUNTY, Kan.) — Recent changes to Kansas roadways have been causing some confusion with drivers and emergency responders.

The Kansas Department of Transportation redesignated segments of highways K-14, K-61, K-96 and K-17 in Kingman and Reno Counties.

State Highway 14 from US-54 to K-61 has been changed to K-11. K-17 from US-54 to K-96 is now K-14. K-96 to Nickerson has been redesignated as Highway K-14 with K96 Dual.

Official roadway changes have not been communicated.

"I think this was a bad idea," says Captain Wayne Baughman, Reno County Sheriff's Department.

It's what he was most worried about after the new road changes went into effect.

In a 911 call to Reno County Dispatch Wednesday night, the caller gave responders an old location after a vehicle rolled over on K 17, but what is now known as K 14.

The ambulance made it to the right location but the tow truck went to a location 14 miles west of where the accident actually happened.

"If it's a critical incident, minutes could mean a lot, if somebody's critically injured," says Baughman

The kansas department of transportation re-numbered  4 old highways: K 14, K 61, K 96 and K 17 . A new road, K 11 has been developed where old roads used to be.

No new signs or mile markers have been put up to reflect the changes.

The Sheriff's Department says it's already causing some headaches.

"It was not well thought out who needed to be involved...I think that it's probably messed up," says Baughman.

"Well, it won't be confusing for people that know where they're going and it won't confuse anybody from around here but I just don't understand what the need for the change is," says Cameron Brewer, Pretty Prairie resident.

"What worries me is if it's someone who comes up that doesn't know this area, I think it will take a long time to question the exact location," says Baughman.

Making it a challenge for those who answer the calls for help.

The Reno County Sheriff's Department says it could be at least five weeks before the proper changes are made.

Changes to state highways cause confusion in Reno County
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