Cornell Local Roads Program
Road Chatter - the Cornell Local Roads Program monthly e-newsletter

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A View from the Road—July 2017

David Orr PE, Director, CLRP

The future of safety……’s still you.

My wife and I recently bought a new car that has many safety features including adaptive cruise control. I can set the speed of the cruise control and if a vehicle in front slows down, our car slows down. Once they speed back up, our car speeds up until it gets to the preset cruising speed. I have used it on high speed highways; I did not have to touch the gas or break for over 50 miles on the Thruway on a recent trip. I have also used it on low speed streets; I have been through several villages with 30 mph speed limits and only had to break if I was the lead car. You do have to remember to stop at stop signs and traffic lights, but all I have to do in many cases is steer.

Overall, I like the adaptive cruise and can see it will make my wife and I safer including less fatigue on longer trips. However, you have to be careful to not over rely on the safety features and to know their limitations. In the recent fatal accident involving a Tesla car that had an even more advanced control system, the driver was warned several times to take back control before the crash.

We are still the best (and worst) safety feature in any vehicle. 93 percent of all fatal crashes involve human factors and that number is not likely to go down anytime soon even as new technology comes on board. Put on your seatbelt, use defensive driving techniques, don't speed, put down that smart phone, and don't drive when drowsy or under the influence of alcohol or drugs (even prescription ones). Stay safe out there.

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2017 Highway School

The 72nd annual Highway School was held on June 12th – 14th and was a huge success with 726 people from across the state of New York in attendance.

Presentations available on the CLRP website.

The 2018 Highway School will be held June 4th – June 6th. Hope to see you there!

CLRP Workshops

Engineering Workshops

Geosynthetics in Pavement Systems

  • August 8—Cayuga County
  • August 9—Oneida County
  • August 10—Dutchess County

Engineering registration form

Bridge Conference

Call for seminars. Please read this request for presentations for the 23rd Statewide Conference on Local Bridges.

Other Training

Test Your Knowledge

ARTBA Student Video Contest 2017

We have recently opened ARTBA’s 7th Annual Student Transportation Video Contest. Each year, we ask students of all ages across the country to submit a short video about transportation, and then screen the winning videos at ARTBA’s National Convention in the fall.

AASHTO Training Courses Available at No-Cost through July.

In an effort to help make jobs and worksites safer, AASHTO has launched two new safety-related courses to ensure your inspectors are well informed and prepared to spot safety concerns.

AASHTO is also offering a third course focused on ensuring ensure equipment fleet program managers are up-to-date on best practices of preventive maintenance. 

FHWA Center for Accelerating Innovation UHPC Webinars

Ultra-High Performance Concrete series webinars.

  • Register here for the July 11th webinar topic “UHPC Implementation stories”.
  • Register here for the August 15th webinar topic "Pulaski Skyway – Owner’s Perspective".

FHWA Center for Local Aid Support Webinars

Safe Transportation for Every Pedestrian (STEP)

  • Register here: Discussions on countermeasures to keep pedestrians safe at uncontrolled crossing locations

Traffic Incident Management (TIM)

  • Register here for Part I: Attendees will gain a foundational understanding of TIM Program actions and proven strategies.
  • Register here for Part II: Attendees will bridge TIM Program actions and strategies with training by learning about the National Responder Training Program taught throughout the country.

CCE NY Extension Disaster Education Network Resources

In the aftermath of the 2017 Lake Ontario Flooding Event – CCE NY has assembled the following resources:

Data Driven Safety Analysis

Using new, evidence-based models, transportation agencies can quantify safety impacts with more confidence.View an EDC-4 Innovation Spotlight video on DDSA.

Interesting Articles

USDOT rescinds from states $857 million in unobligated federal-aid highway funds Better Roads Daily Newsletter

45,000-pound paving machine slides off trailer, blocks Hwy 83 for hours.KOAA News 5

Rain stops, but flooding continues to plague Central New York

Need for Speed: Woman Clocked Driving 111 MPH on New Hampshire Highway WBZ/CBS Boston

416 Riley-Robb Hall / Ithaca, NY 14853 / phone: 607-255-8033 / fax: 607-255-4080 / email:

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