Don’t drive in dust storms, says ADOT

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The Arizona Department of Transportation has a message for motorists who think they can drive head-on into a dust storm: “Pull Aside, Stay Alive.”

Following the successful launch of last year’s public awareness campaign, ADOT is intensifying its efforts to educate drivers about the threat of dust storms as monsoon season officially begins in Arizona on June 15th. ADOT, along with the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the National Weather Service, has reactivated its “Pull Aside, Stay Alive” public awareness campaign, including television and radio public-education announcements, to educate drivers about what to do (and what not to do) when they encounter dust storms.

ADOT’s mission is to provide valuable information to drivers before they get caught in a low-visibility dust storm. This year, the agency’s top recommendation is to avoid driving into a wall of dust at all costs.

“Driving into a dust storm is dangerous, and oftentimes it can be avoided. This is a message that can’t be emphasized enough,” said ADOT Director John Halikowski. “During monsoon season, drivers and their passengers must do their part by planning ahead if there are threats of a dust storm. It’s better to alter travel plans than to attempt to drive through dangerous conditions. But if you’re on the road and a dust storm suddenly appears near you, pull off the highway as quickly and safely as possible. Do not drive through a dust storm. It’s a risk you don’t have to take and remember to never drive distracted.”

Dust storms develop quickly, and dust-related crashes can occur, particularly along the Interstate 10 corridor between Phoenix and Tucson. To advise drivers of approaching storms, ADOT employs a range of strategies — including electronic highway message boards, social and traditional media, communication with ADOT staff and law enforcement officers in the field, television and radio advertising and close coordination with partnering agencies — to keep information flowing to motorists.

For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/AZDOT.

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