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Highway Bill Addresses Wildlife

July 9, 2012 Jackson Hole, State of Wyoming No Comments

In Wyoming, traffic jams sometimes mean waiting for a herd of elk or pronghorn to cross the road, or people stopping to view herds of bison. Even worse, it may be precipitated by an unfortunate collision of a vehicle with one of the state’s abundant wildlife. The new federal transportation bill approved over last week recognizes the dangers for people and critters, and it grants state and federal agencies funding to retrofit roads to prevent collisions. Rob Ament with the Western Transportation Institute says there are several solutions to pursue; including wildlife underpasses and warning lights alerting motorists of the presence of wildlife. Ament praises the Federal Highway Administration for recently filing a wildlife-vehicle collision report with Congress, documenting a 50 percent increase in collisions over the last 15 years. The report estimates there are up to two million collisions each year – which he says rarely end well for wildlife, and sometimes result in human fatalities.

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