X marks the spot on the road. But for what?

(Melinda Johnston)
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Folks in Mint Hill were surprised several weeks ago when the North Carolina Department of Transportation painted a giant white X with a box around it in the road in front of the Mint Hill Fire Station on N.C. 218. Not even the firemen knew what it meant.

Turns out, X marks the spot to let cars know not to stop in that stretch of road so that the fire trucks and ambulances can pull out of the station unimpeded when called.

“The markings are installed where traffic may back up in front of a fire station, blocking their way out to the road,” said NCDOT District 10 spokesperson Jen Thompson. She said there are currently no plans to install X’s at any other locations in the area.

“Basically, the markings are used to indicate to traffic where not to stop, accompanied by signs directing motorists not to block that area. The signs may not yet be up at this location if the marking have just been put there recently.”

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