Dead Man's Curve

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Dead Man's Curve, a section of U.S. Route 99 in Lebec, California, abandoned when Interstate 5 was constructed over the Tejon Pass

A Dead Man's Curve is a crescent or horseshoe-shaped section of a road that has claimed lives because of numerous traffic accidents.

United States[edit]



An S-shape connector on the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge, as seen on September 29, 2009, from the U.S. Coast Guard station on Yerba Buena Island


  • A sharp turn on eastbound Interstate 70 near Morrison that is preceded by a seven-mile (11 km) stretch of a 6.5% grade downslope, which has been the site of numerous fatal runaway truck accidents.[5][6]


  • A sharp turn at the end of Kapaa Quarry Road, which is a dimly lit utility road in Kailua. Honolulu County, that has claimed eight fatalities and is considered one of Oahu's haunted roads.[7][8]


  • In Towanda, Illinois, an almost 90-degree Dead Man's Curve on the original Old U.S. Route 66 was the site of many accidents; a number of which ended in fatalities. The roadbed was eventually turned into a park and walking trail.[9]


  • In Indianapolis, a curve on Interstate 70 westbound at mile marker 83.1[10] When opened, it had a negative bank on the right shoulder, and several truckers lost control and hit the a bridge abutment, losing their lives. The stretch was closed, re-engineered with a positive bank and with rain slots along the boundary and was reopened with a 40 mph speed limit.



  • In northern Bossier Parish, a sharp curve on Louisiana 157 (Hickory Drive), just inside the city limits of Plain Dealing, south of the town cemetery.[12]




  • In Milford, MI, Oakland County 42°33'37.4"N 83°35'50.0"W[citation needed]


  • Sharp turn on Missouri State Route 34 just east of Garwood, in Reynolds County.

New Mexico[edit]

New York[edit]


Dead Man's Curve in Cleveland, Ohio
Dead Man's Curve was constructed as part of the Innerbelt project in 1959. At the time, Interstate 90 had been planned to continue westward on the Shoreway, connecting with its current location via the never-built Parma Freeway.[24] It soon became apparent that the curve was too sharp for travel at typical Interstate speeds, and in 1965, the state lowered the speed limit from 50 mph (80 km/h) to 35 mph (56 km/h).[citation needed] Four years later,[not in citation given] authorities completed the first set of safety retrofits, which included banking the curve and installing rumble strips and large signs.[25]
According to the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT), the crash rate on the Innerbelt (which includes Dead Man's Curve) is two to three times the regional average for urban freeways, despite the reduced speed limits on the roadway. The department is investigating ways of enhancing safety on the stretch, including a complete realignment of the roadway to reduce the degree of the curve.[21] According to a 2003 ODOT count, 95,090 vehicles travel on the curve every day.



  • The northern terminus of Interstate 476 in Clarks Summit is a 180-degree turn, with an advisory speed limit of 20 mph, created in order to access a toll plaza before the interchange with Interstate 81.
  • On U.S. Route 22 in Easton, there are several dangerous sharp turns that go past a graveyard.[29] (This is most commonly known as "Cemetery Curve" for that reason.) Streetlights were installed to help cut down on nighttime crashes; the lightposts are themselves frequent victims of collisions.[30]


  • A sharp, sudden turn on U.S. Route 175 (C. F. Hawn Freeway) at the interchange with SH 310 southeast of downtown Dallas.[31] After a fatal truck accident in 2008, the state installed additional beacons and also flashing chevrons to further draw motorists' attention to the hazard. As of 2010, the department of highways is studying plans to eliminate this curve by extending the C. F. Hawn Freeway westward to Interstate 45.


  1. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Birmingham
  2. ^ Lee, Henry K.; Michael Cabanatuan & Jaxon Van Derbeken (November 10, 2009). "Changes coming to Bay Bridge after death plunge". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved November 11, 2009. 
  3. ^ Google Maps view of curve in San Diego County
  4. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Los Angeles (Sunset Blvd)
  5. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Colorado
  6. ^ Gathright, Alan (2007-07-12). "Stretch of I-70 has deadly legacy". Rocky Mountain News. Archived from the original on 2007-07-14. Retrieved 2007-07-13. 
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ Google Maps view of I70 west at mile marker 83.1 in Indianapolis
  11. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Covington, Kentucky
  12. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Plain Dealing
  13. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Baltimore
  14. ^ Foley, Meghan (2012-08-26). "DOT: NO TIMELINE FOR OPENING OF ROUTE 2". North Adams Transcript. Retrieved 2012-09-07. 
  15. ^ "Dead Man's Curve Rescue". Nashua Telegraph. 1956-02-28. Retrieved 2012-09-07. 
  16. ^ Kulsea, Bill; Shawver, Tom (1980). Making Michigan Move: A History of Michigan Highways and the Michigan Department of Transportation. Lansing, MI: Michigan Department of Transportation. p. 10. 
  17. ^
  18. ^ 2
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ a b Chapter 4.0: Conceptual Alternatives – Innerbelt Curve, Cleveland Innerbelt: Conceptual Alternatives Study, Ohio Department of Transportation/Burgess & Niple/URS Corporation, 2006-08-11. Retrieved 2012-07-22.
  22. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Cleveland
  23. ^ Ohio Department of Transportation (2007-05-16). District 12 Speed Zones. p. 5.
  24. ^ Ohio Department of Highways (via "1957-1958 Biennial Report excerpt". Retrieved 2012-07-22. 
  25. ^ Cabanatuan, Michael (November 11, 2009). "Ideas offered to slow S-curve motorists". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved November 11, 2009. 
  26. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Cincinnati
  27. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Dayton
  28. ^ Google Maps view of curve in on the Mount Hood Scenic Byway
  29. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Easton
  30. ^ "Shine the lights on Cemetery Curve; Tuesday will be a great day for no-shows - Oct. 28 letters to the editor". Easton Express-Times. 2010-10-28. Retrieved 2010-12-15. 
  31. ^ Google Maps view of curve in Dallas

External links[edit]