October 14, 2019
When you leave your home, get into your car, and set a course for a certain destination, you expect to have a safe trip on reliable roads and bridges. That expectation only happens with a lot of behind-the-scenes planning from a network of professionals who use a variety of tools.
One of the tools traffic safety professionals use is a Strategic Highway Safety Plan. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, an SHSP is a “statewide coordinated safety plan that provides a comprehensive framework for reducing fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads.”
The Iowa DOT has long been a national leader in traffic safety. Our long-term, strategic approach dates back several decades, so the development of a formal plan is second nature to us. Earlier this year, the Iowa DOT and our safety partners released the fourth version of the plan covering 2019-2023.
Some of these lost loved ones made decisions behind the wheel that ultimately cost them their life. But many others were simply caught in the aftermath of someone else’s bad decisions. National research shows that 94 percent of all traffic fatalities occur because someone made one or more bad choices. Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, allowing yourself to become distracted when you’re behind the wheel, driving when you’re tired, speeding, and not wearing your seat belt are all major contributing factors to traffic deaths.
If you plan to use your driver’s license or DOT-issued ID as proof of identity when you fly, starting October 1, 2020, you will need to make sure your card is marked with the REAL ID gold star in the upper right corner. A REAL ID marked card is also necessary if you want to enter a federal building or nuclear power plant that requires an ID to enter.
One year may seem like a long time, but the Iowa Department of Transportation, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and Iowa Airports came together today to encourage anyone who plans on flying on a commercial airline or entering a federal building after Oct. 1, 2020, to consider obtaining a REAL ID sooner rather than later.