July 20, 2017
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Transportation task force will meet July 26 in Kansas City

The second meeting of the "21st Century Missouri Transportation System Task Force" will take place from 1-3 p.m. on Wednesday, July 26, in Kansas City's Union Station Board Room. The task force was created during this year's legislative session with the passage of House Concurrent Resolution 47 sponsored by Rep. Kevin Corlew (R-Kansas City).

Missouri State Representative Kevin Corlew sponsored the bill and now chairs the task force.

The task force was created to evaluate the current condition of the state's transportation system and funding levels and to make recommendations.

Corlew is the task force chair and Sen. Dave Schatz (R-Sullivan) is vice chair. The panel includes members of the House of Representatives and Senate, a member of the governor's staff, the director of economic development, the superintendent of the highway patrol, the MoDOT director - and nine Missouri residents or representatives from non-governmental organizations within the state.

This meeting will focus on an overview of transportation funding activities and transportation infrastructure solutions in other states. Presenting at the meeting will be Kevin Pula, senior policy specialist at the National Council of State Legislatures, and a national transportation infrastructure expert from Kansas City-based HNTB Corporation. MoDOT Director Patrick McKenna and Kansas City District Engineer Brian Kidwell will also make a presentation on the condition of the state highway system.

The meeting is open to the public, and an hour of the meeting will be devoted to public testimony regarding Missouri's state highway system and its funding.

Click here to see all of the Task Force members - Task Force.
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 647 people (147) of which represent business) who have taken the pledge so far. 

Click below to accept the challenge!

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Did You Know This?
Missouri expecting many visitors to view the Aug. 21 solar eclipse

Missourians will have the chance to experience a total solar eclipse on Aug. 21. 

The beginning phase of the eclipse will start at approximately 11:45 a.m. when the moon begins to cross over the sun. The time of the total eclipse, when the moon entirely blocks the sun's bright face, will begin at 1:06 p.m. in St. Joseph and travel diagonally across Missouri to Perryville at 1:21 p.m. 

After the brief moments of total eclipse, the moon will move off the sun until it completes the process at approximately 2:45 p.m. The only time you can look directly at the eclipse without eye protection is during the time of totality and only if you are located in the path of totality.

Events across the state are planned for this unique astronomical event. An additional 1.2 million people are expected to visit Missouri beginning Aug.18 and leaving most likely by Aug. 22.

Motorists are also advised to expect heavy traffic on Missouri's interstates and all roads inside the area of the total eclipse on Monday, Aug. 21. Extreme congestion is expected once the eclipse passes in the afternoon. Viewers of the eclipse should leave early for their viewing location, stay put and then leave late to avoid the heavy congestion after the total eclipse.

MoDOT has safe driving tips on our website, like: Plan ahead and allow extra travel time to reach your viewing destination. For more safe driving tips click here - http://www.modot.org/eclipse/.

For more information on the eclipse, visit the State of Missouri website - https://www.mo.gov/eclipse/.
Have You Seen This?
Route 65 rebuild project in Springfield begins

Route 65: THE REBUILD project, as it's being called, has begun. The project will replace the two outside highway lanes in each direction between Kearney Street and Sunshine Street in Springfield. The original pavement, built in the 1970s, has outlived its useful life and is deteriorating to the point  where it must be replaced.  The inside lane in each direction closest to the median is new pavement which was constructed in 2010-2011 when Route 65 was widened to six lanes. No work will be done to the two inside, new lanes.

To complete the project quickly and safely, Route 65 will be CLOSED in one direction at a time and in short segments between interchanges for a total of up to 60 calendar days - 30 days in each direction.

The project is into its second week, and progress is good.  Drivers are urged to follow the signed detour on Interstate 44 to Route 360/60 if they have plans to travel through Springfield.  

To find all the information on the project, time-line and closures, visit the website - Route 65 Rebuild.
Have You Seen This?
2017 Highway Safety & Traffic Blueprint Conference

MoDOT and the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety will host the annual Missouri's 2017 Highway Safety & Traffic Blueprint Conference in Columbia, Sept. 27-29, 2017. 

Transportation experts from across the country will speak about innovations in traffic safety. 

The conference provides an opportunity to network with other traffic and safety professionals and learn about new advances and strategies in highway safety. An exhibit hall will display products and services from local and regional vendors, showcase transportation-related organizations - and share traffic programs to improve safety and mobility.

Conference and registration information is available at the following site -  http://muconf.missouri.edu/traffic/index.html.
Where's baby - look before you lock

Each summer several organizations bring attention to the Where's Baby campaign. These are the current statistics for heatstroke deaths in the United States as of July 10, 2017 - f rom the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's website - .https://www.safercar.gov/parents/InandAroundtheCar/heat-involved.html.
  • Total number of children who have died from heatstroke from 1998 to present - 719
  • Number of children who have died from heatstroke in 2017 - 19
  • Number of children who died from heatstroke in 2016 - 39
  • Average number of child heatstroke fatalities per year since 1998 - 37 
Here's what you can do to keep kids safe:
  • Never leave a child alone in a motor vehicle.
  • Make a habit of checking your back seat.
  • When strapping a child into a car seat, leave a reminder like a cell phone or even your left shoe in back with them.
  • If you see a child unattended in a vehicle, call 911.
  • After parking your car, lock it. Children who get inside an unlocked vehicle can become trapped.
To learn more, click here -  http://www.wheresbaby.org/.
Roadway Safety
Missouri joins five states to launch enforcement blitz against speeding
6-state regional effort, obey the sign or pay the fine

Missouri law enforcement officials have announced they will conduct a speed enforcement blitz throughout the state from July 21-July 23, 2017. "Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine" is an intensified effort to crack down on speeding. Similar crackdown efforts are occurring across the region in Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas and Oklahoma. Up and down the highways and roadways of these states in the country's midsection, officers will be ticketing anyone exceeding the speed limit. 

"Speeding translates to death on our roadways. It greatly reduces a driver's ability to steer safely around another vehicle, a hazardous object - or an unexpected curve. Speeding drivers put themselves, their passengers and other drivers at tremendous risk. All drivers need to be on alert - the posted speed limit is the law. When it comes to speeding, no more warnings and no more excuses - Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine," said Susan DeCourcy, Regional Administrator NHTSA Region 7. 

National and Statewide speeding deaths
In 2015, speeding was a contributing factor in 27 percent of all fatal crashes in the U.S. and more than 9,500 lives were lost in such crashes, according to the latest data available from the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

In Missouri during 2015, there were 869 total traffic fatalities with 310 of them (36 percent) speeding related.

"During the "Obey the Sign or Pay the Fine" blitz in Missouri, officers will intensify enforcement of posted speed limits in Missouri. We'll stop and ticket anyone caught speeding - especially on Interstates 70, 44, 55, 35, where most of our speed-related crashes occur," said Colonel Sandra Karsten of the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

Read more here - Obey the Sign.
Fatality update

Did you know...84 percent of fatalities involved in lane departure crashes took place during dry or ideal conditions? Complacency leads to disaster - always be on alert regardless of road conditions.
Statewide Fatality Totals  as reported on the 
Missouri State Highway Patrol
website  as of July 16, 2017:

                       2017 Totals as of 7-16-17 - 459
                        2016 Totals as of 7-16-16 - 467
                       2015 Totals as of 7-16-15 - 423
                       2014 Totals as of 7-16-14 - 386
                       2013 Totals as of 7-16-13 - 368
                       2012 Totals as of 7-16-12 - 440
Missouri Dept. of Transportation | (888) 275-6636
P.O. Box 270 Jefferson City, MO 65102-0270