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FORT MYERS SHORES | Dangerous curves: what family wants after fiery crash damaged their home

People who live there calling for speed bumps to prevent future accidents
Posted at 6:25 PM, Nov 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-08 15:35:20-05

FORT MYERS SHORES, Fla. — In September, investigators say a driver went off a curve on Fifth Street in Fort Myers Shores, careened through multiple trees in a yard, then crashed near a house. Now, the people that live here want their road to be safer.

Dennis and Brenda Keene were sleeping when the car landed in their front yard. Dennis Keene recalled the crash, stating, "He hit those two trees, came over into the yard, nose-dived right there into that hump. He flipped upside down, tore down my fence, then started on fire." Keene says the crash caused $30,000 in damage to his house that he’s still working on repairing.

For nearly 50 years, Keene has observed an ongoing issue in his neighborhood: speeding on the curve in front of his house. But, it wasn’t until that accident that he decided to take action and call the county for help. Keene said two weeks ago, the county responded by installing curve warning signs, but he still sees people driving too fast. Keene notes, “It’s a drag strip. Probably every four or five cars, someone speeds.”

To address the problem, Keene is now calling for more safety measures, saying, “What I would like to see done is speed bumps. I hate them just like everybody does, but, they’re a necessary evil for us to keep from people getting hit.”

To gain insight into the process of installing speed bumps, Fox 4 reached out to Lee County. A county spokesperson revealed that when a request for speed bumps is made, the Department of Transportation evaluates the need for them. However, speed bumps are typically used to decrease cut-through traffic rather than to regulate speed. Still, Keene believes they could help make his neighborhood safer, saying, “Cut down on the traffic. It shouldn't be a through street all the way through the Shores.”

In the meantime, while Keene is grateful for the new speed warning signs, he says he hopes that his efforts will lead to the installation of speed bumps in the future.