Federal Transportation Funding Will Help Save Lives, Reduce Severity Of Injury | News

Safety is vital to every transportation program and project – and a key part of the Oregon Department of Transportation’s strategic action plan. Much of the estimated $ 1.2 billion in additional funding for transportation en route to Oregon from the recently passed federal infrastructure investment and jobs act will be focused on safety.

This new funding will strengthen existing efforts and add new ones to improve the safety of all of us as we move through our communities and state – whether we walk, cycle, drive or take public transit.

“This additional investment will allow us to implement more safety projects statewide,” said Christina McDaniel-Wilson, state road safety engineer. “This means that 50 additional fatalities or serious injuries and 750 more lower severity accidents can be avoided over the life of these projects. “

The law strengthens existing federal transportation safety programs and introduces two more urgent safety needs:

• One is to prevent fatalities and injuries from crashes involving motor vehicles hitting other vehicles and people stopped by the side of the road – this aligns with Oregon’s “Move over” law. and other efforts to improve the safety of our emergency responders on the roads.

• The other is to educate the public on law enforcement practices during roadside checks and to train law enforcement officials on improving the safety of interactions with the public during roadside checks. This includes reducing racial profiling in traffic stops and aligns with ODOT’s goal of improving fairness in Oregon’s transportation system.

By collecting feedback from Oregonians in the coming months, ODOT has already identified several major investments in the safety of Oregon communities, such as:

• More than a quarter of a billion dollars in additional direct investment in repairing and replacing Oregon bridges – making them safer during a major earthquake and for recovery after a major disaster. Learn more about State Bridges: https://www.oregon.gov/odot/Bridge/Pages/index.aspx

• Potentially up to $ 200 million in additional funding for cities, counties and metropolitan planning agencies for safety, bicycles / pedestrians, bridges and other community priorities.

“A large portion of the additional funds for safety will support our Transportation Safety on All Roads program, which uses national data and research to select the best projects that will effectively reduce the most fatal and severe crashes on all roads. Oregon Highways, ”state traffic engineer. said Angela Kargel. “The IIJA also includes a new effort to meet the safety needs of pedestrians and cyclists, so we will see more of these projects in the years to come. “

How to follow IIJA in Oregon

• Watch for an ODOT online open house in February

• Provide public comment at Oregon Transportation Commission meetings: Jan. 20 • Feb. 17 (special meeting on the IIJA) • March 10 • March 30 (special meeting on the IIJA)

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