Stopping drivers from falling off Gates Pass Rd

Another car drove off the edge Sunday

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - It's happened again.
      
The tricky twists of Gates Pass Road sent another car off the road and into the canyon below.

Gates Pass Road gives drivers a beautiful view, and some ugly consequences if they drift just a little out of their lane.
       
In a lot of spots, there's no shoulder, no guardrails and no escaping a steep drop if you stray off the pavement.
       
Sunday afternoon a woman rolled her car, landed right side up and still managed to survive the drop.

Most drivers know Gates Pass Road requires extra attention.

We met Maureen Gagliardi right after she drove down the road.

"It scared the heck out of me to be honest with you. But I just kinda--I did the white knuckle thing."
      
Pima County is studying how to improve safety on Gates Pass.
     
A one-point-five mile stretch has had 66 non-fatal wrecks in seven years.  That's more than three times the accident rate on the county's other roads.
      
Short term the county can improve warning signs and make the edge of the road easier to see at night.
      
Pima County transportation director Ana Olivares says widening the road would probably mean blasting out rock.

"The other alternative would be to bring in a dump truck with a whole bunch of other dirt on the other side to do it but mostly it's removing the hills and widening the road."
       
And that would require environmental permits to protect the scenic world that brings many drivers here in the first place.

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