Truck accidents remain a problem in Georgia as more 18-wheelers now make their way through the state to nearby ports. Not only do these accidents often lead to loss of lives and destruction of property, but they can also shut down a whole portion of the highway. Even emergency vehicles might get stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic in these instances.
Over the years, Georgia has experimented with several different programs and plans to tackle these problems. Some have not yet come to fruition, but should within less than a decade.
Clearing the highways
AJC reports on one high-way clearing program Georgia has in place, known as The Towing, Recovery and Initiative Program. When companies clear accident debris in metro Atlanta within 90 minutes or less, TRIP pays a bonus of up to $3,500.
Before the city began to offer this incentive, companies took as long as four and a half hours to clear accidents involving trucks. That time dropped to an average of fewer than two hours when the TRIP started. Even so, it provides only a reactive solution to a growing problem.
Building truck-only lanes
Georgia’s proactive approach involves removing trucks from the regular interstate roads completely. Instead of traveling alongside passenger vehicles, 11Alive reports that trucks might soon get their own highway lanes.
The truck-only lanes should become available by 2028. These lanes should run from Macon to McDonough. Georgia’s Department of Transportation estimates the project might cost about $1.8 billion to complete the 40-mile stretch that reportedly includes a barrier to separate trucks from passenger vehicles.
If Georgia succeeds in creating these truck-only interstate lanes, it becomes the first in the country to do this. Many other states might soon begin to put plans in place to follow suit or even to complete theirs sooner.