October 27, 2016
What comes to mind when you see the word “tailgate?” Is it someone driving aggressively and getting too close or maybe someone who is celebrating a sporting event that could include alcohol? Neither of these behaviors leads to safe driving. Combing the two can be even more deadly.
Drunk, high, aggressive or all of the above – the results can be horrific - http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/horrific-footage-moment-dad-sees-7452975
The fatality count of 304 is an increase of nine from last Monday. To see statistics published daily by the Office of Driver Services, go to http://www.iowadot.gov/mvd/stats/daily.pdf
Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show aggressive behaviors behind the wheel causes at least to 50 percent of the nation’s fatality crashes every year. Here’s the best way to handle yourself if an aggressive driver is menacing:
- Let them pass.
- Stay relaxed and focus on your own driving.
- Avoid eye contact or making any gestures that might escalate the situation.
- In extreme cases, pull over to a safe place and notify the police.
It can be more than a little intimidating. You’re traveling down the interstate and there is a large truck in the lane beside you, another truck in front of you, and a third truck coming up behind you. If things go wrong or one driver isn’t paying attention, the result could be disastrous.
How do you know these trucks, their drivers, or the carriers they are hauling for are safe? You don’t. That is the job of the Iowa Department of Transportation’s Motor Vehicle Enforcement officers. For decades these dedicated men and women have been identifying potential safety problems, both with the mechanical workings of the large vehicles and with the drivers behind the wheel. Along the way they continue to improve their processes to increase the safety of everyone on Iowa’s roads.
One major improvement has recently changed the way the officers screen vehicles at the weight scale facilities in Dallas and Jasper counties. The 360SmartView system electronically screens vehicles entering the weigh station and almost instantaneously flags each truck that may require extra attention from law enforcement.
With winter quickly approaching, it’s important to know what tools are available to help you stay safe before driving Iowa’s roads. The Iowa Department of Transportation’s recent Iowa 511 mobile app update and 511 full featured website enhancements can do just that.
Hands on the wheel, eyes on the road
The Iowa 511 mobile app update will more easily inform drivers of Iowa’s road conditions without having to look at their smartphones. Included in the update is the "Tell Me" feature. This feature allows people to get hands-free, eyes-free audio notifications of traffic events while driving. Previously, users had to interact with the app in order to view details about traffic impacts they might encounter on their journey. “Traveler safety is our top priority, and the audio notifications will allow drivers behind the wheel to pay attention to the road and not become distracted by their devices,” said Sinclair Stolle, traveler information program engineer at the Iowa DOT. The feature also has an “I’m a driver” or “I’m not a driver” option so passengers can opt to take charge of the device or allow drivers to check on their drive before they leave.