Speed-detection signage is coming to curve on Airport Road

DESTIN – The City Council on Monday agreed to have at least one portable speed-detection sign set up temporarily by the sharp curve of Airport Road in hopes of getting speeding drivers to slow down.


RELATED: Destin Airport Road curve might (finally) see guardrails


The curve stands by Mattie M. Kelly Boulevard and Destin Executive Airport.


Last month, the council agreed to have an increased law-enforcement officer presence by the curve, which has seen numerous accidents in recent years because of motorists traveling too fast.


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Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office deputies are being asked to crack down more on the speeders. In addition, the council on Monday was asked by staff to consider approving permanent speed-detection signs at both approaches to the curve.


Two of those types of signs might cost up to $17,500, according to city information.


That cost, however, is “a bit too expensive,” said Councilman Parker Destin, and other council members agreed.


In response to Destin’s inquiry, Sheriff’s Office Capt. Charlie Nix said he will work on locating at least one portable speed-detection sign for the curve.


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While a portable sign might cost about $15,000 to purchase, the Sheriff’s Office or another law-enforcement agency should be able to temporarily provide one or more of them for the city’s benefit at no cost to the city, Nix said.


Once set up, the portable signage will remain by the curve for about a week or two before the council re-assesses the situation.


In answer to a question from Councilwoman Prebble Ramswell, City Manager Lance Johnson said city staff recently placed new reflective devices on the curve and “slow down” signs at the approaches to the curve.


Also, an engineering firm contracted by the Florida Department of Transportation continues survey work that later this year might lead to other safety measures, such as a high-friction road surface and/or guardrails, at the curve.