Annual conference focuses on safety on rural highways

Law enforcement officials and safety professionals from throughout Idaho discussed safety on Idaho’s rural roads and highways when they met Thursday in Pocatello for the 2011 Highway Safety Summit.

The annual meeting attracted more than 200 professions who explored ways of improving safety and reducing crashes that result in fatal or serious injuries.

ITD’s Office of Highway Operations and Safety sponsors the summit.

Participants included representatives from the Idaho State Police, county sheriff's offices, local police departments, regional and state transportation personnel, and other agencies and organizations involved in traffic safety.
The summit program featured Nic Ward of the Western Transportation Institute of Montana State University, who talked about "Rural Highway Safety Culture." Most of Idaho's highways are classified as rural.
Participants explored other safety topics from engineering highway safety solutions, youth and alcohol, incident management, child passenger safety seat enforcement, to the new high of spice and bath salts, commercial motor vehicle enforcement, the Alive at 25 youthful driving program, STAR motorcycle program and essentials of crash scene investigation.
Idaho's Traffic Resource Prosecutor, Jared Olson, also gave a legal review and case law update.
"Idaho's Highway Safety Summit is sponsored each year by ITD and provides education to our law enforcement agencies and highway safety partners," said Mary Hunter, ITD highway safety manager. "The summit provides tools to our partners to help them maximize their effectiveness as we strive toward our goal of reducing preventable highway traffic deaths, injuries and economic losses."

The April 29 issue of the Transporter will provide additional details of the conference and the annual “Beyond the Traffic Stop” awards presented to individuals who exemplify the commitment to improved highway safety.

Published 4-22-2011