Connecticut, Delaware Aim to Boost Roadway Safetyeditor@aashto.org March 31, 2023 0 COMMENTS
The Connecticut Department of Transportation and the Delaware Department of Transportation recently kicked off new roadway safety efforts for their respective states.
[Above photos from Connecticut DOT and Delaware DOT]
The Connecticut DOT is implementing a new speed-camera program aimed at reducing work zone speeding incidences while helping improve overall roadway safety statewide.
The “Know The Zone: Speed Safety Camera Program” goes live on April 10 first in Norwalk and East Hartford roadway work zones, followed by the Route 8 corridor between Shelton and Seymour shortly thereafter.
Similar programs have led to positive results in other states, Connecticut DOT noted. For example, Pennsylvania began continuously enforcing its Automated Speed Enforcement as part of its “Active Work Zones” program in April 2020. That year, Pennsylvania saw more than a 19 percent reduction in work zone crashes.
Meanwhile, two years after Maryland launched its “SafeZones” program in 2010, speeding violations in SafeZone construction sites decreased by more than 80 percent.
“[While] this program may be new to Connecticut, it has been implemented elsewhere in the northeast, and the evidence is clear: these systems work,” noted Connecticut Commissioner Garrett Eucalitto in a statement.
“[State] DOT employees, construction workers, laborers, and emergency responders, put their lives on the line every day working on our roadways [and] our goal is to ensure everyone makes it home safe after their shift,” he added. “So we’ll keep pushing to use the tools proven to reduce crashes and save lives.”
Concurrently, in Delaware, Governor John Carney (D) joined the Delaware Department of Transportation, the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security, members of the General Assembly, and advocacy organizations to unveil a package of new initiatives and six pieces of legislation designed to improve safety on Delaware’s roadways.
The legislation included within Delaware’s new roadway safety effort focuses on curbing reckless driving; prohibiting open containers of alcohol in most vehicles; expanding “Move Over” protections; requiring helmets in the first two years of a motorcycle license; strengthening child safety seat requirements; and allowing snowplows to be equipped with green lights to increase their visibility to other vehicle operators.
“Last year, Delaware tied its record for traffic fatalities,” the governor said in a statement. “This package of legislation, along with the current activities and protection measures, will expand safety measures for all Delaware [residents] and travelers.”
“We continue to see an alarming number of fatalities on Delaware roads, with 165 last year and more than 30 already in 2023,” added Nicole Majeski, Delaware DOT secretary. “Our top priority is safety, and these legislative proposals can help make our roads safer.”
She noted that ongoing actions by the Delaware State Police and Delaware DOT to improve traffic safety include:
- Increased enforcement for speeding and distracted drivers;
- Increase multi-modal safety investments statewide;
- Increased enforcement of illegal truck parking;
- Pilot of a wrong way driver notification system;
- And increased intersection safety measures including don’t block the box and red light running.
Gov. Carney also noted that his Fiscal Year 2024 recommended budget includes funding to create a new “Traffic Education and Enforcement Unit” comprised of 11 officers to patrol Delaware’s highest incident roadways to help curb excessive speeding and prevent accidents.