AMES, Iowa – April 29, 2013 – The Iowa
Department of Transportation is working across the state this spring and summer
to determine how many cars, trucks and other vehicles are using the state's
This year’s efforts are concentrated in
northeastern Iowa, but occasionally crews will work elsewhere in the state.
Many employees will spend peak hours between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. at one location
counting the morning, noon and evening traffic. They count and classify
vehicles, record vehicle turning movements, tally helmet usage by
motorcyclists, and gather other data necessary to plan the future of Iowa's
roadway systems. During off-peak hours when they are not counting
vehicles, these employees may be seen around the community.
Other employees will be placing and checking
portable traffic recorders in the same general areas. When the recorders are
set, they usually record data for one or two days and are checked periodically.
Employees responsible for the recorders work various shifts, so their vehicles
may be seen at local motels while most of us are going about our regular
Another data collection method involves
capturing images of state highways. This program covers half of the state
yearly and utilizes a van with two mounted cameras that collect 200 images per
mile. At the same time, precise location information is collected through a global
positioning system. That data is stored along with the images on the van’s
onboard computer system. This van may be seen operating on state highways in
the northern half of Iowa this year.
Other statewide work scheduled for this
summer includes the installation, upgrading and maintenance of permanent,
automatic traffic recorders and weigh-in-motion equipment.
All of this work is critical to the future of
the state's transportation system. The information gathered allows
transportation officials to better predict traffic trends, thus allowing them
to plan improvements that will give Iowans the most benefit for each dollar
Contact: Mark Hansen at 515-239-1990 or email@example.com