The Iowa Department of Transportation estimates crashes on Iowa roadways cost the state over three-point-one billion dollars in lost lives and damage to property and vehicles in 1998. D-O-T safety director Tom Welch says while that number may seem high, the state’s roadways are getting safer.He says raffic volumes are up 35-percent while fatalities are down 25-percent in the last ten years. Welch says there are a lot of things that’ve made the state’s roadways safer, such as better roads, lowering of the alcohol limit and an increased use of seatbelts.Welch says they’ve also made progress in fixing the most dangerous intersections in the state.He says Iowa compares favorably to other states when it comes to the number of accidents per miles driven. Welch says there are some conditions in Iowa that lead to more accidents, such and an increasing number of elderly drivers.Welch says the state is looking at ways to make elderly drivers safer.
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