April 27, 2017
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Catch a break on Amtrak Missouri River Runner fares
Kids ride free on weekends, midweek travel discounted, AAA discount doubled

Whatever reason you have to travel, from a big meeting or a well-deserved summer getaway, there are three good, money-saving reasons why you should explore the Show-Me-State via the Amtrak Missouri River Runner now through August.

The Kids Ride Free offer applies to weekend travel Friday, Saturday and Sunday only for kids ages 2-12 when accompanied by a full-fare paid adult. The Kids Ride Free sale is for travel through Aug. 27, 2017. View this discount here - Kids Ride Free.

With the Midweek Fare sale, you can receive a 25 percent discount when you book your seat for travel on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday for travel through Aug. 31, 2017.

Along with the regular 10 percent discount, AAA members can receive an extra 10 percent off when they purchase tickets now through May 15, 2017 for travel between April 22 and June 12, 2017.

These discount offers are available online only at Amtrak.com/Deals. Reservations are required at least one day in advance of travel, or three days in advance of travel for the AAA discount, on the Amtrak Missouri River Runner route between St. Louis and Kansas City, which includes stops at Kirkwood, Washington, Hermann, Jefferson City, Sedalia, Warrensburg, Lee's Summit and Independence.

Terms and conditions vary and are displayed on Amtrak.com. The offers are valid for coach seats only, are not combinable with other discount offers and are dependent upon availability. Some blackout dates and other restrictions may apply.
Join the Movement!
Take the pledge: when you get into any vehicle, buckle up your safety belt. If you are a driver, put the cellphone down.  Join the 304 people (61 of which represent business) who have taken the pledge so far. 

Click below to accept the challenge!

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Safer Roadways
Fatal motorcycle crashes at a record high
Motorcycle awareness month this May aims to increase safety for all drivers

Since 2012, the number of fatal motorcycle crashes has resulted in 475 deaths - 122 of those deaths occurred last year alone. Motorcyclists are already on the road this spring, and more will be out soon with beautiful May weather just around the corner. The Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety wants to remind all motorists to "Watch for Motorcycles" in hopes of preventing motorcycle crashes, injuries and deaths on Missouri roadways.

"A single motorist fatality is one too many, let alone the 122 motorcyclist deaths that we saw in Missouri last year," said Mike Right of AAA - Auto Club of Missouri. "All drivers can help bring those numbers down by making sure all basic safety rules are followed on our roads, like using turn signals, not driving impaired or distracted and using the safety tools available to you such as safety belts and helmets."

Other safety tips for drivers include:
  • Allowing a safe following distance of three or four seconds when following a motorcycle so the motorcyclist has enough space to maneuver or stop in an emergency, and
  • Always checking your blind spots before changing lanes and moving through intersections
Safety tips for motorcyclists include:
  • Making sure you have completed training at one of the 29 available training locations in Missouri that can be found at www.mmsp.org,
  • Positioning yourself in the lane to be most visible to other drivers,
  • Making sure your passenger is also wearing the proper protective riding gear and
  • Wearing brightly colored protective gear or having reflective tape or stickers on your motorcycle for additional visibility.
For more information, visit www.saveMOlives.com or on social media at Save MO Lives.
Upward trend in commercial motor vehicle incidents
Change the habits; change the numbers
Since 2013, the number of fatal crashes involving commercial motor vehicles (CMV) has steadily risen each year - from 84 in 2013 to a preliminary 119 in 2016. This year's commercial motor vehicle awareness campaign will remind Missouri motorists to drive safely around CMVs to help bring these numbers down. It will also remind big rig drivers to obey speed limits, avoid distractions and buckle up.

Commercial motor vehicles are an important part of our nation's economy and have a large presence on our highways.

While CMVs do contribute to some traffic crashes, research shows that too many drivers of passenger cars unnecessarily endanger themselves due to inattention or reckless driving around these large vehicles.

"There are many things drivers can do to make sure everyone is safe when traveling around big trucks," said Bill Whitfield, chair of the executive committee of the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety. "Paying attention is the first step."

Other steps to driving safely around CMVs include:
  • Staying out of the blind spots or "No Zones" of big rigs, and only passing on their left side. If you can't see the truck's mirrors, its driver can't see you.
  • Not cutting off large trucks after passing - make sure both headlights can be seen in your rearview mirror before moving back into the driving lane.
  • Using your turn signals to alert other drivers of your intentions to change lanes or exit the highway.
  • Putting your phone down - focus on the road.
  • Wearing your safety belt - when utilized correctly, it can reduce the risk of moderate-to-critical or fatal injuries by 50 percent.
For additional information on roadway safety, or other transportation-related topics, contact the MoDOT Customer Service Center toll free at 1-888-ASK-MoDOT (275-6636). For more information on the commercial motor vehicle campaign, visit www.saveMOlives.com.
Did You Know This?
Missouri celebrates 30th anniversary of Adopt-A-Highway Program

MoDOT's popular litter prevention program - the Adopt-A-Highway Program - turns 30 this year. MoDOT officials noted the milestone last week with a celebration in Jefferson City featuring area Adopt-A-Highway volunteers.

Texas started the program in the mid-1980s as an effort to involve citizens to help clean state highways. Missouri followed suit in 1987. Today in Missouri, more than 5,200 groups and 50,000 volunteers participate in the program, and more than 6,200 miles of roadway have been adopted.

Adopter groups include commercial and private enterprises, civic and non-profit organizations, families and individuals. Adopters perform about $1 million a year in litter cleanup and beautification efforts.

"This extra help allows us to devote resources to other much needed tasks," said MoDOT Chief Engineer Ed Hassinger.

Participants in the program have four options: clean up litter; mow; beautify through landscaping or plant native Missouri wildflowers and grasses. MoDOT provides adopters with a certificate of appreciation, safety training and materials, and a sign with the group's name posted on each end of the adopted highway section. MoDOT also provides trash bags and pick up and disposal.

Adopters must agree to adopt at least a half-mile of urban roadside or two miles of rural roadside; collect litter at least four times a year; sign a three-year agreement; submit an activity report to MoDOT and follow all safety procedures.

More information about the program is available at www.modot.org/services/community/adoptahighway.htm.
Have You Seen This?
Keep your focus on the road
2017 Ford Focus to be given away to one lucky Missourian

Pledging to drive distraction free can not only help to save your life, but it may just find you the new owner of a 2017 Ford Focus. Joe Machens Ford will be handing the keys over to one lucky contestant during the evening news broadcast of KRCG on May 5.

The Focus on the Road campaign has been ongoing since August. Campaign promotions have included high school assemblies featuring members of the ThinkFirst Missouri speaker's bureau. These dedicated individuals bring their personal testimonies of traffic crashes to encourage young drivers to create and maintain safe driving habits.

"Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person's attention away from the primary task of driving," said Bill Whitfield, chair of the executive committee of the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety. "Your focus needs to be on the road."

Preliminary data indicates that distracted driving contributed to 17,357 Missouri traffic crashes in 2016.

The deadline to pledge to drive distraction free is 5:00 p.m. on April 21. Simply visit www.saveMOlives.com and follow the in link.

For additional information on roadway safety, or other transportation-related topics, contact the MoDOT Customer Service Center toll free at 1-888-ASK-MoDOT (275-6636), or visit www.saveMOlives.com.
Fatality Update

Did you know...
between 2012-2014, nearly 50 percent of work zone fatalities and serious injuries were a result of rear-end and out-of-control crashes. 

Please slow down and pay attention! 

Statewide Fatality Totals
as reported on the
Missouri State Highway Patrol
website  as of April 23, 2017:

        2017 Totals as of 4-23-17 - 251
        2016 Totals as of 4-23-16 - 264
        2015 Totals as of 4-23-15 - 224
        2014 Totals as of 4-23-14 - 195
        2013 Totals as of 4-23-13 - 174
        2012 Totals as of 4-23-12 - 241

Missouri Dept. of Transportation | (888) 275-6636
P.O. Box 270 Jefferson City, MO 65102-0270