Residents want traffic light at dangerous Clermont intersection

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CLERMONT, Fla. - There's a new fight over the effort to install a traffic light in front of a community for people 55 and older in Clermont.

Residents said the intersection at Hancock Road near State Road 50 is the scene of a growing number of crashes.

Channel 9's Berndt Petersen said the county approved a traffic signal but then changed its mind.

Clermont resident Judy Proli said she's an excellent driver, but the intersection in question makes her lose her nerve.

"I would venture to say we've been sitting here three minutes," she told Petersen while waiting at the intersection to proceed.

Proli said she's spent the last couple of years trying to convince the Lake County commission to pay for a stop light on Hancock at the side entrance to the Summit Greens 55-plus community.

Clermont resident Ken Forte backs the idea, saying he was even involved in a crash at the intersection.

"Quite a bang on the rear of the car," Forte said.

Residents said there is a blind curve on the road, which means drivers must react quickly to pull out.

"When you actually try to get out there, your life is in danger," said Ray Goodgame of the Clermont City Council.

Goodgame said the city is willing contribute up to $20,000 toward the $150,000 signal, but some Summit residents are against the idea.

"We don't have that kind of money in government to squander," said resident Ginger Martin.

"Well, how much is a life worth? I think that's where you are with this light," Goodgame said.

Last year, the county commission approved a light at the intersection, but a split vote disapproved it.

Proli said the county should accept Clermont's offer.

"Why not? Why wouldn't they want something for safety for people?" she said.

City officials will take it up at a meeting next month.