Parnell, Sean. “Governor Announces New Seward Hwy. Safety Plan.” YouTube. YouTube, 19 Feb. 2013. Web. 27 Feb. 2013. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wjLK_MdB7pU>.
This is a press announcement by Gov Sean Parnell and his administration, detailing the past and future efforts of the state to minimize the danger along the Seward Highway and other Alaska Safety Corridors. He supports his claim by offering examples of various planned and completed projects in each of the plans three components: Enforcement, Education, and Engineering. Parnell called upon three other experts, Public Safety Commissioner Joe Masters, Transportation Commissioner Pat Kemp, and DOT Consultant Steve Horn, to provide details and back him up. Their purpose was to document the efforts that they’ve taken and show that they are good administrators
Included are many possibilities for improvements. I could pick any one of these solutions and work on my own improvements from there. For instance, I think some improved public education in Girdwood would be an excellent topic. Perhaps I could propose a message board on the way out of Girdwood that displays current weather conditions and advisories, similar to the one near Potter’s Marsh. I found that this wasn’t a very in depth source however. These are politicians at a press conference, trying to prove something to the public. There aren’t any real technical details and it’s full of empty words. But it’s a good starting place for ideas, and I can fill out the details for each project from different sources.
Here is my first installment of my CRAVE Research. It falls into the category of Reading.
United States. US Department of Transportation. “Washington’s Target Zero Teams Project: Reductions in Fatalities During Year One.” Behavioral Safety Research. By J. Chiccino. N.p., Nov. 2012. Web. 19 Feb. 2013. <www.nhtsa.gov/staticfiles/nti/pdf/811687.pdf>.
This is a report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration detailing the success of a diving safety initiative started in Washington in 2006 called the Target Zero Team Project. It was comprised of a special task force of 21 troopers who patrolled during prime times for impaired driving, focusing on catching DUI’s, speeding, and reckless driving. The agency summarizes that the program was effective, reducing fatalities and accidents caused by speeding, drugs, and alcohol, in the targeted area. This claim is backed up first by a description of the program, then by a collection of data on the number of tickets given and the number of accidents that occurred before and after the program. The purpose of this report is to provide a source of information for other states or municipalities that are considering a similar program, and to prove that the program was a success and the department did not waste funds. This is exactly what I need, because it provides a relevant example of one type of solution that may work on the Seward Highway.
I found the results surprising as well as positive. I didn’t imagine that merely an increased officer presence would solve people’s behavior, but it did. Also, the project only cost $4.5 million, which isn’t much for the scope of their project. We would need to only patrol 40 miles of highway, as opposed to a whole state! This could be a real economical solution to the dangers of the Seward Highway. But perhaps this isn’t relevant because it addresses impaired drivers and not the environmental hazards. The natural hazards of the Seward highway could be the main cause of the danger. More research is necessary to uncover the source, so we can target this specifically.
Topic: The Seward Highway
Research Question: How can Girdwood and Anchorage as a community make the Seward Highway safer for everyone who travels on it?