October 15, 2015
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Some Things Aren't Worth Chancing
Motorists reminded to drive safely around big trucks.

Commercial motor vehicles (CMV) are an important part of our nation's economy. They carry goods from coast to coast and make up 20 percent of all traffic on Missouri's interstates. During Operation Safe Driver Week, Oct. 18-24, along with statewide educational efforts, law enforcement will actively pull passenger vehicles and trucks over for unsafe behavior, issuing citations for all manner of violations, from speeding to failure to obey a traffic device, to DUI's.

Crashes involving tractor trailers don't happen very often, but when they do, the disproportionate size of a truck versus a car means those crashes can often involve serious injuries or worse. Research shows that in the majority of these crashes, drivers of passenger cars unnecessarily endanger themselves by not paying attention and driving recklessly around big trucks. That's why it's so important for all motorists to drive safely around big trucks. There were 111 people killed in Missouri traffic crashes involving a CMV in 2014, with 25 being drivers/passengers of the CMV.

There's no room for taking chances around big trucks - they require big room. "We don't want you to take any chances when it comes to safely moving around big trucks," said Bill Whitfield, chair of the executive committee of the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety. "Please pay attention."

*Don't cut off large trucks or buses. Make sure you can see the top of the truck or bus in your rearview mirror before moving back into your original lane.
*Stay out of the "No Zone". Big trucks have large blind spots on either side and up to 200 feet behind a vehicle. Pass only on the left side.
*Watch your following distance. Keep a safety cushion around trucks. Can you see the truck's side mirrors? If not, the driver cannot see you.

"Commercial motor vehicle drivers are required by federal law to follow strict safety guidelines, including mandatory seat belt usage and hands-free cell phone devices," said Colonel Bret Johnson, Superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. "Failure to do so can result in violations and can affect both the driver and company's safety score."

For additional information regarding 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 Operation Safe Driver Campaign, visit http://savemolives.com/campaigns/details/operation-safe-driver-awareness-week.
Move Over - It's
the Law.
The Move Over law protects law enforcement and emergency response vehicles parked on the side of the road. The law requires motorists to slow down or change lanes when approaching these vehicles. Since 2012, the law includes MoDOT vehicles parked with amber and white flashing lights.



The law is simple. If you see a flashing light on the side of the road, move over to give workers and emergency personnel plenty of room to stay safe. If you can't move over on a crowded highway, you should slow down as you pass them.

Social Media
Emergency Funding
One of the graphics MoDOT used on social media to keep the public informed on road closures during extreme flooding earlier this year.
Emergency Funds Provided for Missouri's Flood Damaged Roads
 
The Federal Highway Administrator recently announced the release of $1 million in federal emergency relief funds to MoDOT to help with repairs to the state's highway system due to extreme flooding earlier this year. Bridges and roads throughout the state have been damaged from landslides, erosion and scouring, and many culverts have been washed out. In total, 76 of Missouri's 114 counties received damage to state roads and bridges.

The greatest immediate need is in the Northeast and Kansas City areas, and these immediate funds will be used to work on their high priority needs.

MoDOT will continue to address the repairs statewide and will continue to pursue funding for the locations with major damage.

You can read FHWA's news release here -
Have You Seen This?

 

Safer Roadways
Missouri High Schools Challenged
to Drive Safe and Buckle Up
Safe Driving Campaign Educates
to Save Teen Lives


Calling all Missouri high schools to compete in the 2015 "It Only Takes One" campaign for an opportunity to win prizes for your school while educating young drivers about safe driving habits and safety belt use. Sponsored by the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety and ACT Missouri, the statewide competition will run from October 1 to the end of the school year.

It's important that young drivers realize it only takes one text, one drink, one call, one reach, one distraction to cause one fatal moment but that one clicked safety belt could be the difference between life or death in a car crash.

"Six out of ten young drivers and passengers killed in 2014 Missouri vehicle traffic crashes weren't buckled up," said Bill Whitfield, executive committee chair for the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety. "Through education, competition and fun, the 'It Only Takes One' campaign can make a difference with young Missourians and save lives."

To read more, and to sign up your local high school to participate, click here - www.savemolives.com/itonlytakesone

You can also follow SaveMOLives on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, #saveMOlives and #ArriveAlive.

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