In conjunction with the Texas Department of Transportation and the Houston-Galveston Area Council, the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) will host the 2008 Traffic Safety Conference in Houston, Texas, November 17-19, 2008. The conference provides an opportunity for transportation professionals and officials from around the state to come together and discuss important safety issues challenging their local communities.
The welcome session on Tuesday, November 18, will include an address from Vice Admiral Thomas J. Barrett, Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation, and will be followed by a keynote address by Judge Ed Emmett of Harris County at Tuesday’s luncheon. On Wednesday, a general session moderated by TTI Agency Director Dennis Christiansen and featuring State Senator John J. Carona, who serves on Texas’ Senate Transportation and Homeland Security Committee, will focus on state legislative issues.
Other topics to be covered include impaired driving, motorcycle safety, young drivers, law enforcement, federal initiatives, alcohol/drug traffic offender adjudication, red-light camera enforcement, occupant protection issues for Texas, and various emerging traffic safety issues.
“We want to provide all Texans interested in improving safety on our streets and highways with a forum for discussion,” explains John Mounce, director of TTI’s Center for Transportation Safety. “We also want to open a dialogue about how we can encourage a culture of traffic safety around the state.”
Mounce refers to an emerging philosophy concerning transportation safety that acknowledges the idea that engineering innovations and law enforcement can only do so much to keep drivers, pedestrians and riders safe. What is ultimately needed is a change in the way we view the transportation system itself. In a nutshell, we need a “safety culture” that makes traffic safety our priority perspective.
“Bringing together transportation professionals and decision-makers, as we’re doing with this conference, is one way to get that conversation started,” says Mounce.
The 2008 Traffic Safety Conference will be held at the Marriott Houston Hobby Airport hotel.