Accidents up on I-70 |

Accidents up on I-70

Vehicle accidents, especially truck crashes, are mounting on Interstate 70.In response to the rising accident rate, the Colorado State Patrol, the Colorado Department of Transportation and the Colorado Motor Carriers Association have joined forces to solve the problem.The recently formed I-70 Crash Task Force gathered data from 810 accidents that occurred from 1996 to 2000 and came up with some interesting statistics:-29 percent involved no other vehicles.-31 percent of the trucks involved were from Colorado.-Most crashes occurred in daylight, on dry pavement.-Drugs and alcohol were not significant factors.-Most accidents occurred during the winter.-The most accident-prone spots are Vail Pass and the westbound approach to the Eisenhower Tunnel.Glenwood Canyon has also seen its share of accidents.CSP Captain Barry Bratt, headquartered in Glenwood Springs, said the most common factor in accidents in Glenwood Canyon is speeding.”Just about every accident is due to excess speed,” he said.While Bratt feels the posted speed limits in the canyon are adequate and there are plenty of signs to that effect, it’s more a problem convincing people to follow the speed limits, he added.”We just need better compliance,” he said.In addition, it’s not always the out-of-staters who speed and cause accidents in the canyon.”We like to blame people who are traveling through. But most locals aren’t traveling the speed limit,” he said.The task force also came up with some recommendations for preventing accidents on the interstate. For CSP’s part, it will step up enforcement of speeding, aggressive driving and following too closely.The task force will also publish a brochure outlining “hot spots” where accidents have frequently occurred in the past.”We need to remind drivers of those areas and that they need to take care when they’re going through the canyon,” Bratt said.

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