ODOT News Briefs

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District Manager departs for Jackson County job

After a 15-year career with ODOT, John Vial departed in February to accept a job as the new director of Jackson County Roads and Parks Department.Vial spent the last 11 years working as the Rogue Valley District Manager and oversaw maintenance operations in Jackson and Josephine counties.According to ODOT Region Manager Paul Mather, the agency has selected Shawn Stephens to serve as the interim District Manager while the recruitment and interview process is completed.

TV talk shows looks at Ashland welcome center-rest area project

The proposed Ashland Welcome Center and Rest Area project is the focus of the next edition of the live TV talk show, Moving Ahead with ODOT.Gary Leaming, the ODOT project spokesman for the Rogue Valley, will host.The live program airs at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, March 7 on Rogue Valley Community Television (RVTV) government channels in Jackson and Josephine counties. The program features a call-in segment that offers viewers the opportunity to ask transportation-related questions.Moving Ahead with ODOT also rebroadcasts several times each month. The dates and times on the RVTV web site: www.roguetv.org.

ODOT debuts safety action plan to reduce truck-at-fault crashes

Truck crashes and truck-at-fault crashes have steadily increased in recent years. While total truck miles traveled increased 8 percent from 2001 to 2006, the truck crash rate increased 23 percent and the truck-at-fault crash rate increased 22 percent.In response, the Oregon Department of Transportation’s Motor Carrier Transportation Division has developed a safety action plan to reduce truck-at-fault crashes. The easy to read plan takes a proactive approach to solving the problem and starts by outlining steps that ODOT and its partners are taking, including:

  • Assessing the problem, reviewing all available data
  • Planning ahead to direct efforts effectively
  • Focusing on driver behavior as the root cause of most crashes
  • Rallying partners
  • Providing assistance and resources to enforcement officers
  • Listening to new ideas and suggestions
  • Educating the public and the industry

‘To our knowledge, no other states have a plan like this,’ David McKane, ODOT Motor Carrier Investigations, Safety and Federal Programs manager. ‘Everyone has a stake in enhancing highway safety. Everyone should know that Oregon has an open door policy about ideas and suggestions. Working together we can make a difference.’Visit the ODOT Motor Carrier Web site to download a copy of the safety action plan and to get more information, www.oregon.gov/ODOT/MCTD.

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