As much as you wanted to blame the truck driver who crashed into your family member, you had to admit you agreed with his story: the road itself was to blame for his loss of control on the highway. You’ve complained about the potholes and worn patches of asphalt on I-49 before, and catching one at a high speed could certainly cause a tire to blow. But does that mean the government is responsible for the crash—and that they are now duty-bound to fix the road?
Why Truck Crashes Are Likely to Increase on Missouri Roads
While the government may indeed be responsible for an accident caused by bad road conditions, it appears those roads aren’t going to be fixed anytime soon. It was recently announced that the Federal Highway Trust Fund is nearly empty, causing state governments to suspend or cancel many highway, bridge, and street-mending projects—many of which have been rated in a critical state of disrepair.
While many states are having difficulty coming up with the money to fix battered roads, some of the worst roadways are a little too close to home:
- Missouri. Usually, the state adds 300 to 500 road and bridge projects to its transportation improvement program. However, in January 2014, the state highways and transportation commission voted against adding any projects to the program. Not only is Missouri not building anything new, it’s unlikely that its older projects will be repaired or completed, as 47 percent of its annual highway and transit funding comes directly from the federal government.
- Arkansas. At least 10 highway and bridge projects have been postponed in Arkansas due to a lack of funding. Two of these are bridge replacements—one in Pulaski County and one in Garland County—that are in desperate need of added support. Although Arkansas has the 12th largest highway system in the nation, it comes in at 44th in line of federal and state revenue used to maintain those roadways.
- Kentucky. State officials in Kentucky have delayed millions of dollars’ worth of road projects, including a particularly treacherous section of Interstate 65. Repairs and widening of lanes along I-65 will have to wait until more funding can be allocated, despite numerous accidents occurring there each year.
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