Work zone patrols reduce injury crashes on I-84
Injury crashes have been cut in half by increased work zone patrols in the I-84 corridor between the Garrity and Meridian Interchanges, ITD announced this week.
The Idaho State Police (ISP), through an agreement with ITD, has increased patrols for several months in the 12-mile work zone.
From Aug. 15-Oct. 30, there were 50 crashes investigated by ISP in the work zone, down from 69 for the same time period in 2007. Of those, eight were personal injury crashes – less than half of the 19 recorded for that same time period on that stretch of highway in 2007.
"That can be attributed to a variety of reasons, such as lower speed limits (reducing the frequency and especially the severity of crashes) and greater patrol visibility and enforcement," explained Capt. Steve Richardson, region commander of ISP's Region 3 (covering the ten southwestern counties).
Idaho State Police officers issued 986 citations during those months, and an additional 699 warnings. Forty-one citations were issued for DUI and another 96 for non-use of seat belts.
The enhanced patrols are provided through a subsidy from ITD's GARVEE Program Office. ITD is using GARVEE (Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle) bonds to expedite many local I-84 projects.
"The partnership between ITD, Connecting Idaho Partners and ISP is a critical factor in providing enhanced public safety for those using I-84 while the necessary highway construction is carried out. When we can have a greater patrol presence in conjunction with additional signing, reduced speed limits and other safety measures used in the work zone, construction workers and motorists have a much safer environment in which to conduct their work and travel," Richardson said.
Richardson added that in late 2005 a similar awareness/safety enhancement patrol was in place near Garrity for the eastbound on-ramp project, and three years later, it still boasts a much better safety record than it did prior to the patrols.