Brian Peteritas is a GOVERNING contributor.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking to combat a growing number of fatal car crashes involving wrong-way driving, Milwaukee County, Wisc. is launching a new safe driving initiative. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that the county has installed pole-mounted radar detectors on nine freeway ramps to detect drivers traveling the wrong way on the highway. When activated by a car traveling the wrong direction, an alert is sent to the State Traffic Operations Center and officers in the vicinity receive text messages. The Department of Transportation highway cameras can then be used to track the vehicle until officers can reach it. In addition to radar, two of the more heavily trafficked ramps are being fitted with solar-powered "wrong-way" signs that blink 24 hours a day. The installation cost and first year of monitoring will be $55,000 and has been paid for with federal highway safety improvement funds. Data will be collected by the Department of Transporation in that first year, and depending on the results, more cameras and signage could be added in the future.