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Legislators Seek a Safer Teton Pass

December 19, 2012 Jackson Hole, State of Wyoming, Teton County No Comments
teton pass

Wyoming legislators representing this corner of the state are voicing concerns about Teton Pass in a letter to state Transportation Director John Cox and offering suggestions about what might be done to help make the road safer.  That letter is signed by State Representatives Marti Halverson, Ruth Ann Petroff and Keith Gingery, and Senators Dan Dockstader and Leland Christensen.  Representative Gingery says among the concerns are state statutes that are similar and appear to conflict with each other.  He says there are two particular statutes that are very similar, but they have different penalties which has caused some confusion for enforcement.  Consequently, Gingery says the legislature is looking at adjusting the penalties to resolve some of the confusion. Gingery says while the highway department has plans to move the truck runaway ramps to the downhill side of the road, that work is not scheduled until 2017, and the lawmakers would like to see the priority for that project moved up.  At the same time, Gingery says, a more aggressive effort to educate truckers about the pass through signage is being considered. He says having better signage deeper into Idaho as far as I-15 and US 20 could be very helpful.  Says Gingery, “We’ve had some really good conversations with truck drivers as to how did they end up here; and for many of them, it was just a mistake and they didn’t know how to get out of it.”  He says they had turned off of I-15 seeking the shorter route and discovered the pass and its restrictions only when they arrived at the foot of the pass.  He says the real problems came when they didn’t turn around and retrace their steps. Gingery says the tone of the letter was very supportive of the work the highway patrol and highway department are doing on the pass, but exploring ways the legislature might complement their efforts to make the pass a safer road.

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