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October 14, 2019Cart

Business

by Fairfield County Business Journal
by FCBJ

New report details problems in CT’s roads and bridges

Photo of the Thames River Bridge in New London courtesy of JJBers/Creative Commons.

Connecticut’s infrastructure is so bad – pause for a “Match Game”-style response, “How bad is it?” – that a new report warns 62 percent of the state’s major roads are in poor or mediocre condition. The report also found 8 percent of Connecticut bridges, or more than 300 bridges, are structurally deficient.

The transportation research organization TRIP estimated that Connecticut motorists traveling on roads in serious need of repair spend a total of $1.8 billion a year in extra vehicle repairs and operating costs, or $681 per motorist. The report also noted that 61 percent of the state’s urban interstates get congested during peak hours, which is no surprise since vehicular travel on Connecticut’s highways increased by 3 percent between 2000 and 2016. Connecticut’s population grew by 5 percent between 2000 and 2017.

There were 293 traffic fatalities in 2016 in Connecticut, and a total of 1,319 people died on the state’s highways from 2012 through 2016. On the positive side, Connecticut’s traffic fatality rate of 0.93 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles of travel was lower than the 1.18 national average. And not every incident can be blamed on lousy drivers: TRIP estimated that motor vehicle crashes in which roadway design was likely a contributing factor cost Connecticut motorists $1.6 billion per year in medical costs, lost productivity, travel delays, workplace costs, insurance costs and legal costs.