ODOT News Briefs

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Marmon named new ODOT District Manager

Jerry Marmon is the new ODOT District Manager for the Rogue Valley. The announcement came from ODOT Region Manager Paul Mather last month.

In the District Manager position, Marmon is responsible for the leadership and management of maintenance and operations and oversees all state highways in Jackson and Josephine counties and roughly 100 employees.

“Jerry’s experience working with multiple agencies and communities will serve our maintenance program well,” said Mather. “This position is very challenging, especially in the winter as our maintenance crews work to keep the highways open.”

Working at ODOT since 2002, Marmon most recently served as the agency’s regional program manager for the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Prior to that, he was the regional program manager for the ODOT environmental program.

Marmon holds both a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Environmental Science from Western Washington University and a Master’s of Science degree in Resource Planning from the University of New Mexico.

He replaced John Vial, who left last March to become the director of the Jackson County Roads and Parks Department.

Monthly TV show features summer construction news

Summer construction is the focus of the next edition of the live TV talk show, Moving Ahead with ODOT.

The live program airs at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 11 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 rebroadcasts several times each month. The dates and times on the RVTV web site: www.roguetv.org.

Upton Road Bridge opened on schedule

The Upton Road overpass bridge in Central Point reopened on schedule following a seven-month closure.

The new bridge features sidewalks and bike lanes and complements recent work completed by Central Point at the intersection of Upton Road and Scenic Avenue.

“The reopening of this bridge is a significant milestone in this project,” said ODOT Project Manager Tim Fletcher. “This bridge provides sidewalks and bike lanes for kids going to school or using the athletic fields. And it makes it easier for people who want to walk to the Jackson County Fair.”

Work continues through the summer on the Upton Road Bridge that spans Bear Creek. The new bridge will feature a left-turn lane for westbound Upton Road traffic onto Penninger Road.

Funded by the Oregon Transportation Investment Act, the project also replaces the I-5 bridge spanning Foley Lane north of Blackwell Hill and repairs the I-5 bridge spanning Foothills Boulevard and the Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad tracks.

Shasta Constructors of Redding, California is the prime contractor on the $17 million bundle of bridge projects, which is scheduled for completion in November.

The bridge bundles are designed to provide economies of scale to taxpayers and ease of construction for the contractor.

The bundle is part of the 10-year, $3 billion Oregon Transportation Investment Act. OTIA funds will repair or replace hundreds of bridges, pave and maintain city and county roads, improve and expand interchanges, add new capacity to Oregon’s highway system, and remove freight bottlenecks statewide.

New safety campaign targets aggressive drivers

Oregon’s newest safety campaign is aimed at getting the attention of aggressive car and truck drivers. The Ticket Aggressive Cars and Trucks campaign, or TACT, is designed to reduce truck crashes through education and enforcement. Specifically, TACT focuses on aggressive driving near the vicinity of large trucks.

“A key TACT campaign message is, LEAVE MORE SPACE. Bad things happen when vehicles get too close to each other,” said ODOT Motor Carrier Safety and Federal Programs Manager David McKane.

Last month, the Oregon Department of Transportation’s Motor Carrier Division, in cooperation with local law enforcement agencies and the Oregon trucking industry, introduced TACT to Oregon motorists in Portland and the north Willamette Valley area.

In the last 10 years, three out of four people who died in these collisions were riding in the cars. In fact, in crashes involving a car and truck, the car occupants are 15 times more likely to be killed than truck occupants. McKane said these are the keys to remember:

  • Don’t cut off trucks. For safety sake, maintain one car length for every 10 miles per hour of speed.
  • Don’t tailgate. Trucks have large blind spots behind them. If you tailgate a truck, you can’t see traffic ahead. If the truck brakes suddenly, a tailgater has no time to react and no place to go.
  • Allow trucks plenty of room. Both car and truck drivers must be especially careful when entering a highway or merging with traffic.
  • Don’t speed. Speed is the leading cause of all crashes in Oregon.

For more information, visit the ODOT Motor Carrier Transportation Division Web site, www.oregon.gov/ODOT/MCT.

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