Daily News Briefs, September 18, 2023

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NY Lawmakers And Bridge Authority Address Suicide Deterrence And Prevention

Lohud.com reports, a group of state lawmakers were joined by suicide prevention advocates at a September 14 event held to encourage the New York State Bridge Authority (NYSBA) to budget funds for the installation of “climb deterrent fencing” on five of its bridges. A 2021 bill to require the fencing’s construction failed to pass. One of its supporters, a co-organizer of last week’s event, claimed research shows that deterrence barriers significantly decrease suicide rates and 90 percent of people deterred from taking their own lives “will never try suicide again.” Another lawmaker said the isolation and mental illness resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic is partially responsible for a recent national upsurge in suicide that needs to be addressed. NYSBA issued a statement pointing out that while it hasn’t yet adopted fencing, it has taken other deterrent measures, including installing suicide prevention phones and monitoring systems on all bridges, and providing security staff training. It added it will host an interagency “Transportation for Life” summit in Poughkeepsie on September 22 “focused on improving mental health outcomes and addressing mental health emergencies in public spaces, including our bridges.” The day-long event will bring mental health professionals and transportation officials together to discuss the suicide phenomenon and strategies for prevention and deterrence.

A news release by New York Governor Kathy Hochul (D) has more information about the summit.

Economic & Social Considerations Affecting Transportation Highway-Tunnel-Bridge Maintenance Highway-Tunnel-Bridge Safety (Includes COVID-19 Impacts) New York New York State Bridge Authority (NYSBA)


Volpe Center Will Present Webinar On Using NEPA Review To Shape Projects

Registration is open for a September 27 webinar, “Using NEPA Review to Define and Shape Better Projects,” sponsored by USDOT’s Volpe Center on transportation innovation. Presenters will be Minnesota DOT Commissioner Nancy Daubenberger; Kammy Horne, a development and planning official for San Antonio’s public transit authority; and two USDOT officials, Megan Blum of FTA and Emily Biondi of FHWA. The event is the next in Volpe’s Project Delivery Center of Excellence thought leadership series on best practices for delivery of Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act projects.

Environmental Protection Policies Procedures And Initiatives Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) (MnPASS) US Department of Transportation (USDOT) US Gov't Transportation Funding US Infrastructure Funding And Financing Initiatives


AASHTO Names Finalists In America’s Transportation Awards Competition

AASHTO Journal reports, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) recently announced the finalists competing for this year’s two national America’s Transportation Awards. The contest, sponsored by AASHTO, AAA and the US Chamber of Commerce, honors state DOTs and “the positive impacts their projects bring to communities across the country.” The 12 finalists selected from 81 nominations submitted by 36 state DOTs will now compete for a Grand Prize awarded by a panel of independent judges and a People’s Choice Award conferred on the basis of a public vote weighted by state population. The article lists the finalists with links to pages describing their nominated projects. Florida DOT’s emergency restoration of causeway access to Sanibel Island following Hurricane Ian is in the running for recognition.

American Automobile Association (AAA) American Road & Transportation Builders Assoc. (ARTBA) Florida Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Industry Awards & Recognitions Lee County (Florida)


These are just some of the toll industry developments TRN is following.

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