Study: Idaho Rural Roads Dangerous and Deteriorating

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Idaho has the nation's second worst rural roads in the nation, according to a new study. The analysis from TRIP, a national nonprofit, said Idaho was second only to Vermont in the percent of rural roads in poor condition. In 2008 31 percent of Idaho’s major rural roads were given a poor rating and another 26 percent were rated mediocre. In 2010 TRIP rated 9 percent of Idaho’s rural bridges as structurally deficient while another 9 percent were deemed functionally obsolete.

“Idaho’s economic recovery is at significant risk if we continue to short change our transportation infrastructure,” said Mark Dunham executive director of the Idaho Associated General Contractors.

In 2009 there were 226 traffic fatalities in Idaho, 146 occurring on rural, non-interstate roads. According to TRIP, factors contributing to Idaho's disproportionately high fatality rate included inadequate roadway safety design, longer emergency vehicle response times and higher speeds traveled on rural roads.

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