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After another year of increasing highway fatalities, and to address risky behaviors on Missouri roadways, the Missouri Department of Transportation is hosting a town hall meeting in northeast Missouri this month.
Excessive speeds, distracted driving, impaired driving, and not wearing seat belts remain prevalent behaviors and are leading causes of traffic fatalities and serious injuries in Missouri.
In northeast Missouri, seat belt use is particularly concerning where, in 2022, 83 percent of vehicle occupants killed were not wearing a seat belt.
During that same time in northeast Missouri, 27 people were killed due to aggressive driving, 14 were killed due to impaired driving, and at least two people were reportedly killed due to distracted driving, though the actual number is likely higher.
MoDOT is hosting the town-hall style meeting to open a dialogue with the area public and get their input on behavioral safety efforts in their communities to improve safety.
The first of such meetings will take place Wednesday, June 28, at the Sesquicentennial Building in Palmyra from 5-6:30 p.m.
MoDOT representatives will discuss recent statistics and trends, share information regarding available programs and resources, and solicit attendees on ideas for helping promote safe driving practices.
Members of the traveling public are encouraged to attend and join the discussion.
“While we have a number of programs dedicated to promoting safe driving behaviors, it’s important to have discussions with local communities to learn how we can work together to create a culture that values safety,” said Jon Nelson, assistant state highway safety and traffic engineer.
“Each region is unique, and the problems that are prominent in one part of the state can look entirely different than those in another.
“Learning what resources local communities could use to help keep each other safe is paramount in furthering our efforts to reach zero fatalities on our roadways. The conversation is just the first step.”
MoDOT will be looking to do similar meetings in other parts of the state as the year progresses.
Additional information about what Missouri is doing to increase highway safety can be found in the state’s strategic highway safety plan, Show-Me Zero: Show-Me Zero | Missouri Department of Transportation (savemolives.com).