Maine Bureau of Highway hosts listening session in Caribou

Published: Jun. 6, 2023 at 10:43 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CARIBOU, Maine (WAGM) - Thursdays on Sweden Street in Caribou has kicked off and the theme for this week was Summer Safety Shindig. The Maine Bureau of Highway Safety was there hosting an in person listening session to the public. News Source 8′s Isaac Potter has the story.

The Maine Bureau of Highway Safety is giving the public opportunities to give input as they develop the 2024 Maine Highway Safety Plan.

Nate McLaughlin, Highway Safety Coordinator for Maine Bureau of Highway Safety, says “The Highway safety plan is something that we do every single year, something that we submit to the national highway traffic safety administration. That’s how we receive our funding from the government so we enlist in that all the various traffic safety projects that we are going to accomplish for the upcoming physical year and that’s how we get awarded our funding.”

This year marked the first year that the Maine Bureau of Highway Safety has come up to Caribou to host a listening session. McLaughlin says it was important to have this session in the County.

Nate McLaughlin: “So the city of Caribou in particular actually we identify through crash data as being an area that is over represented in fatal crash data. So what that means is that the city of Caribou actually has a high fatality rate coupled with a low population so that makes one fatality in the city of Caribou makes this area over represented in crash data so it is important to us that we came up here to try and get the public’s input on how we can help hopefully curve that and lower that fatality rate.”

McLaughlin says the public has expressed two main concerns.

Nate McLaughlin: “What we have seen so far from some of the listening sessions that we have done both virtually and in person around the state. A lot of those have to do pedestrian safety concerns, some people are relaying concerns with speed. And then we are also are hearing some infrastructure concerns and of course we are happy to take those and will pass those along to our colleagues of the department of transportation.”

McLaughlin adds there are a few ways people can improve highway safety themselves.

Nate McLaughlin: “Slow down, take your time getting to where you are going, buckling your seatbelt, putting the phone down, not texting while you are driving, and very importantly designating a sober driver all of these making sure you are safe to where you are going.”

The Maine Bureau of Highway Safety has held other listening sessions around the state, all with the goal of making Maine’s roads as safe as possible. Isaac Potter News Source 8.