Winners of 2011 National Roadway Safety Awards Announced
States and local communities that want to protect people traveling on their roads can get inspiration from the nine projects and programs that are the winners in the 2011 National Roadway Safety Awards. According to a Roadway Safety Foundation (RSF) announcement, the awards (which are presented every two years) were granted by RSF and the Federal Highway Administration (FHA) for reducing fatalities and injuries on U.S. roadways “through excellence and innovation in operations, planning, and design.”
RSF and FHA chose the nine winners based on innovation, effectiveness, and efficient use of resources, from categories including: infrastructure improvements, operational improvements; and planning, development, and evaluation.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood writes on his blog FastLane:
Every 16 minutes, someone is killed on America’s highways. In 2009, there were a total of 33,808 fatalities, down from 37,423 in 2008. While this decline is an improvement, even one traffic death or injury is one too many. […]
The practices that were recognized not only exemplify the strong commitment that these award winners have to saving lives, but also represent some of the most innovative and effective measures to improve our nation’s roadways, helping to bring our roadway fatalities to the lowest rate in more than 50 years.
It doesn’t always take big spending to find big solutions — the low-cost innovations used by some of this year’s honorees prove it. Creative solutions also have a snowball effect, as many of these practices are then applied by other states, localities and agencies to their own roads. That makes these award-winners even more important to our success in reducing deaths and injuries from traffic crashes.
The 2011 National Roadway Safety Awards website says the awards were presented at a luncheon ceremony on November 15 in Washington, D.C., at which Foundation Executive Director Greg Cohen was Master of Ceremonies and John D. Porcari, USDOT Deputy Secretary, delivered the keynote address, highlighting the importance of the award winners’ efforts in saving lives on America’s roadways.
The award winners include:
In the Infrastructure Improvements Category:
- Using Micro-Surfacing to Reduce Wet-Weather Crash Rates. Awarded to Minnesota DOT District 3B and Office of Materials and Road Research
- Mississippi Cable Median Barrier Safety Initiative . Awarded to Mississippi DOT
- Jones/Linn County Portland Cement Concrete Pavement Overlay with Safety Edge℠ . Joint award between the Jones County (Iowa) Secondary Roads Department and the Linn County (Iowa) Secondary Roads Department
- Making Roadways Safer for Motorcyclists . Awarded to Florida DOT
In the Operational Improvements Category:
- Evaluation of Moveable Barriers in Construction Work Zones . Awarded to Utah DOT
- Safety Patrol Sponsor-Partnership . Awarded to Travelers Marketing LLC
In the Program Planning, Development, and Evaluation Category:
- California’s HSIP Application and Evaluation Tool for Local Roadways . Awarded to California DOT
- Smart Roadside Inspection Program . Awarded to the New Mexico Department of Public Safety-Motor Transportation Police Division
- Minnesota County Road Safety Plans (Joint Award with Wright County Highway Department). Awarded to Minnesota DOT and Wright County Highway Department
- Wright County Highway Roadway Safety Program (Joint Award with Minnesota DOT) . Awarded to the Wright County Highway Department and Minnesota DOT
And there were two Honorable Mentions:
- FM 1960 Median Improvements Program . Awarded to Texas DOT
- Work Zone Safety Education Program. Awarded to the New Jersey Local Technical Assistance Program
You can see news coverage of this announcement in the following AASHTO TV video on the Roadway Safety Awards. (The coverage starts at one minute and 33 seconds into the video and runs until the video reaches four minutes and 14 seconds.)
Image by FHWA Safety, used under Fair Use: Reporting.