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Keep Roads Truckproof



The article entitled "Crash" (Sept. 3) is a sad commentary but highlights the safety problems that already exist on Humboldt County's roadways. Our citizen group CRTP (Coalition for Responsible Transportation Priorities) is seeking community input on ways to make our roads safer and more inviting to pedestrians and bicyclists. Some of these initiatives include spending our transportation dollars on maintenance and repair of our existing roadways, adding bicycle and pedestrian pathways or trails where practical and increasing spending on developing mass transit options that are more accessible and useful to our rural population.

In furtherance of these goals we oppose the Richardson Grove and 197/199 Del Norte projects that will result in an increase in the largest trucks driven on our local roads by out-of-area drivers coming from points all across North America. In fact, that's the point of these projects — to allow the biggest trucks to carry goods from their distant origins all the way to end points in Humboldt County (or through Humboldt County to endpoints beyond).

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, large trucks are only 4 percent of registered vehicles, but account for 11 percent of fatal accidents. When a big truck and a car collide, 97 percent of those who die are car occupants. The last thing we need on Humboldt County's roads are more big rigs driven by tired drivers who are not familiar with our area's steep, winding roads.

We believe there are better projects on which to spend our limited transportation dollars than on projects that add additional hazards to our roads. For those interested in contributing their ideas, please access www.transportationpriorities.org or on Facebook: Coalition for Responsible Transportation Priorities.

Barbara Kennedy, Weott

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