MoDOT team hopes interstate signs provide messages for thought

3 years 3 weeks 2 days ago Sunday, November 20 2016 Nov 20, 2016 Sunday, November 20, 2016 6:05:00 PM CST November 20, 2016 in News
By: Kiara Ealy, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA — They can be witty or straight to the point. The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) has more than 250 dynamic message signs along Missouri highways and interstates that warn of accidents
and can also catch your attention.

But who's in charge of coming up with the messages on the signs and what goes into the process?

Linda Wilson Horn, communications coordinator with MoDOT, works on the team that writes and schedules sign content.

"The main purpose for the signs is when there is a crash or if we have a work zone, the message boards would relay that information to the public," Wilson Horn said. "But we made the decision a number of years ago that instead of leaving them blank when we didn't have a crash or a work zone, that we would use them for public safety messages."

Wilson Horn and her team decided about two and a half years ago that they were going to step up the sign content to be more humorous and creative. The messages are changed every month. She says she and her team strive to make the signs seasonal or pertinent to events at the time, like holidays and tailgating.

How Horn and other MoDOT employees find inspiration for sign messages may surprise you.

"I look at bumper stickers," Wilson Horn said. "I look at things trending on social media. I look kinda, again, just time of year, what's going on."

However, Wilson Horn has no data to show how effective the signs are. In fact, fatality accidents on Missouri interstates and highways are up six percent compared to this time last year.

Ruth Walker, a partner at Bluestem Missouri Crafts, hopes to see some data on the effectiveness on the signs soon.

"I do think there should be studies done because it seems that our highway funds are pretty low anyway and if these signs aren't helping, then they don't need to be putting them up," Walker said.

Whether you love or hate the MoDOT signs, Wilson Horn believes there's a national problem responsible for more than 35,000 deaths across American highways and interstates. She hopes to see Missouri's percentage in that total decrease.

"Our messages, even when they're humorous, they're still focused on wearing your seatbelt, not texting and driving, not drinking and driving, and just slowing down and being more alert when you're instead of sort of driving on autopilot," Wilson Horn said.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA — The City of Columbia Public Works plans to have a 24-person crew begin monitoring road conditions and treating... More >>
2 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 7:48:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — Police are investigating after an ATM was stolen from the Great Southern Bank on 3200 South Providence Saturday... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 5:22:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
MID-MISSOURI - A winter storm is expected to bring snow and ice accumulation to Missouri followed by frigid temperatures. This... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 4:50:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in Weather
COOPER COUNTY, BLACKWATER — A small community in Mid-Missouri is attempting to spread holiday cheer within a few miles of... More >>
7 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 3:30:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
HOLTS SUMMIT - With temperatures around 30 degrees on Saturday, the cold weather did not stop Holts Summit residents from... More >>
7 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:47:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri Department of Transportation crews are preparing for an expected winter storm this weekend. In a press... More >>
7 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:34:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — St. Louis officials have voted to ban local veterinarians from declawing cats. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:21:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — Chatbots could soon be answering more questions from Missourians about their taxes or welfare. The St. Louis... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 2:15:00 PM CST December 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Two people were injured Friday night after an assault and shots fired incident in north Columbia, according to... More >>
11 hours ago Saturday, December 14 2019 Dec 14, 2019 Saturday, December 14, 2019 11:14:00 AM CST December 14, 2019 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - The Boone County Sheriff's Department completed a week-long training program on Friday, cumulating with a role-playing exercise to... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 5:05:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Fire Department has a new chief. City Manager John Glascock says Andy Woody will be taking... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 3:50:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Former Missouri football coach Barry Odom is heading to Arkansas. New Arkansas head coach Sam Pittman confirmed... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 3:19:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA – Columbia psychologist, Kurt Bumby, 50, is charged with two counts of statutory sodomy in Boone County and two... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 3:18:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
FULTON - Although legally blind, Fulton Special Olympics tennis player Jesse competes with enthusiasm in a high demanding sport for... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 2:21:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A proposed plan to expand the Jefferson City National Cemetery across the street and move a park... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 2:15:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
BOONVILLE - Shovels and salt will likely be in higher demand at local hardware stores after a forecasted weekend snow... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 12:55:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
WENTZVILLE, Mo. (AP) — General Motors plans to invest $1.5 billion in truck production at a suburban St. Louis plant.... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 12:24:00 PM CST December 13, 2019 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY- A 71-year-old woman was killed last night after her car struck a tree, according to the Missouri State... More >>
1 day ago Friday, December 13 2019 Dec 13, 2019 Friday, December 13, 2019 11:35:00 AM CST December 13, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 27°
11pm 27°
12am 27°
1am 27°
2am 26°