Kansas City Scout


Friday, November 30, 2012

December is here! Please Celebrate Responsibly!


Don't Be a' Blitzen!


 ...and Don't Drive Impaired!!

Posted by Nancy Powell 
KC Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor

As November winds down and December dawns under sunny skies and 60 degree temps, we here at Scout have been planning and preparing for winter since early fall, just in case. Fortunately, our readiness and resources haven’t yet been required.
But the holiday party season arrived last week.  Whether you are hosting a celebration or attending a gathering where alcohol is served, please assure that a designated driver is in the mix, for those who may enjoy the party a bit too much.  It’s just the right thing to do!
Here are a few SOBERING facts for you to consider:

1.  There were 17 roadway fatalities and 69 serious injuries attributed to impaired drivers in Missouri during December 2011
2.   Drivers aren’t always the only victims in these crashes.  In 2011, 216 people were killed and 865 sustained serious injuries in accidents that involved at least 1 impaired driver
3.   If you cause a fatal crash while intoxicated, you can be charged with involuntary manslaughter, a felony resulting in up to seven years of prison time, a $5,000 fine or both.
4.   If that crash involves a highway worker, the fine is up to $10,000 and loss of license for up to a year.

Scout is vigilant in getting out this message, because we lost one of our own to a drunk driver in September and we vowed to use every opportunity to share this simple request:


Expect to see reminders around town in participating restaurants and places where alcohol is served. MoDOT is mounting a statewide ‘Impaired Driving’ campaign December 10th through 16th to keep awareness levels up and fatalities down.  Look for these guys at your favorite watering holes! 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

KC Scout thanks Boy Scout Troop 178

Troop 178 From Nativity of Mary, Independence, MO

Posted by Nancy Powell
KC Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor

As part of my duties at Scout, I often give group tours of our Traffic Management Center. One such tour occurred earlier this week with 16 young Tiger Cub and Webelo Boy Scouts from Nativity of Mary Scout Troop 178 in Independence, MO. These young people, accompanied by numerous parents and Scout Leaders, were a very attentive audience as I explained the history and function of KC Scout’s Traffic Management Center. Their questions were excellent! They wanted to know how cameras worked in the rain and fog; they asked if our cameras were equipped with night vision; they wanted to know if our equipment used antennas; they asked what happens when cameras stop working; they asked if we ever had equipment stolen or destroyed. They were eager to share what they knew about traffic safety rules such as moving over for emergency vehicles, and they were aware of the dangers that highway workers experienced on the job.

After all the questions had been answered, the den mother who arranged the tour earlier in the month, remembered our having discussed that my son had been involved in Cub Scouting many years ago and was now an officer in the US Army, once again deployed to Afghanistan. She handed me a stack of handmade cards from these young Scouts, honoring Veteran’s Day and thanking soldiers everywhere for helping to keep America safe. She told me the Troop would keep cards and letters coming and will hold my son and his troops up in prayer. Then a dad introduced himself as a dispatch officer with the Independence Police Department. He expressed his ongoing condolences for Scout’s recent loss of Clifton Scott, Motorist Assist Operator. Their personnel were also on scene that awful night and for them, as for us, the healing continues. My heart was touched and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to meet these young people and their involved parents and leaders. Thanksgiving Day has lasted all through the week! 
Thank you, Troop 178


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving 2012


From Your Friends at KC Scout

Posted by Nancy Powell
KC Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor

KANSAS Roadway Fatality Numbers for 2012

On November 5, 2012 the Topeka Capital-Journal reported a total of 313 fatalities on Kansas roadways for the first 10 months of 2012.  To call attention to this startling statistic, KDOT, the Kansas Traffic Safety Resource Office, KHP and AAA have compared the loss of 313 lives to that of the population of Arcadia, KS located near the western border of the state.  In this context, had Arcadia been wiped off the map due to disease or disaster, there would be a massive public reaction.

We call attention to 313 unnecessary deaths because we believe the same sense of public outrage and demand for response is needed to reduce roadway fatalities.
Norraine Wingfield, KTSRO’s Project Director.

In August alone, 74% of Kansas roadway fatalities were attributed to unbelted occupants.  Protect yourself and those you love.  Visit KDOT’s website for important Holiday/Winter travel information and news:


Buckle Up, Every Trip, Every Time


Monday, November 19, 2012

Seat Belt Use is Up In the USA Today

Posted by Nancy Powell
Kansas City Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor

As reported in Thursday's USA TODAY, seat belt usage nationally, hit a record high this year with 86% of motorists now buckling up, according to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report.  This represents a 2% increase over last year.  The largest gain in regional use came from the South with 85% of motorists using seat belts over last year’s 80% usage.  U.S. Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood noted that seat belt use has continued its upward trend from 1994 when only 58% of motorists surveyed claimed to regularly use seat belts.

Each June, state surveys are conducted at pre-selected locations in numerous counties. The data collected at these sites is calculated into a safety belt usage rate using a formula approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The safety belt usage survey enables data collection from locations representative of 85 percent of the state’s population. The data collection plan is the same each year for consistency and compliance with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Guidelines.  Data is collected on an annual basis and this measure is updated in October of the following year. Safety belt use in Missouri remained at 79 percent in 2012, the same as 2011. This represents the highest usage in Missouri since 2004.  Kansas numbers have not yet been released for 2012.
In Missouri the numbers stack up like this:
Information from "Tracker", MoDOT's Performance Measurements Tool
Last month, Missouri transportation officials met and released a “Blueprint to Save More Lives,” that identifies statewide initiatives to achieve a goal of reducing fatalities in Missouri to 700 or fewer by 2016. In August of 2012, MoDOT began a campaign to call attention to the number of roadway fatalities in the state. Each week, the fatality totals are posted on a number of message boards around the State, including the percentage of fatalities due to unbelted occupants. 
As of November 19, 2012
Currently, 33 states have a primary safety belt law, including Kansas. The primary seat belt law means law enforcement may stop a vehicle if they observe an occupant is not wearing a safety belt. Missouri has a secondary safety belt law, which means law enforcement may not stop a vehicle solely to determine safety belt compliance. Law enforcement must observe another driving violation to stop a vehicle and issue a safety belt citation.


This week ushers in the Holiday season with families travelling across the country to visit loved ones.  Please don’t be the next highway statistic.    BUCKLE UP AND ARRIVE ALIVE! 
Let Thanksgiving last throughout the year!

From Your Friends At KC Scout!


Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Posted by Nancy Powell
Kansas City Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor

Today is an important day for our Nation as well as our states.  Please participate in the process.  It's a responsibility we share as Americans.  The issues are complex.  The choices not always easy.  But it is worth remembering that America's sons and daughters, mothers and fathers are serving this country both here and abroad to defend the right to cast a vote for the candidate of one's choice. 
In one week, we will be honoring our Veteran's, past and present. We did that last week here at Scout with our USO Tribute.  Thank a veteran today, next week and in the months ahead.  Your simple acknowledgment of their service will mean more than you may ever know.  I ask this, partly because my son proudly serves in the US Army and will be redeployed back to Afghanistan in two weeks but mostly because it is the right thing to do!
America, the beautiful, is recovering from Hurricane Sandy's destruction on the east coast, wildfires on the west coast, and its national fabric is fraying due to a long campaign season of partisan politics.  Let's heal this divided country. 
During tours of KC Scout's Traffic Management Center, I remind visitors that Scout is a bi-state operation, jointly funded and managed by two Departments of Transportation (MO and KS), one urban, one primarily rural, with two very different cultures and operating philosophies.  But what is remarkable about Scout, is that our two state government agencies work together, despite their inherent differences, to solve a common problem: managing traffic congestion in the metro KC area.

Celebrate America on this Election Day!


Monday, November 5, 2012

On a less serious topic... KC Scout Wins 1st Place!


… For “Best Dressed Department” in MoDOT’s KC District Annual Halloween Costume Contest with Cathy Jones, KDOT’s Liaison to KC Scout earning 1st Place honors for “Best Individual Costume.” 
Posted by Nancy Powell, KC Scout Traffic Management Center Supervisor
L-R, Nancy Powell, Howard Anderson, Cathy Jones,
Amy Stevinson and Don Spencer at the USO!
Mr. Miller's appearance
courtesy of Jason Sims
Throughout the year, MoDOT and Scout focus on getting the job done safely and keeping costs under control.  But periodically, as an organization, MoDOT promotes departmental team spirit with District Management’s support of fun events for its hardworking state employees.  Halloween is one of those unique occasions.  This year’s event was sponsored by the Employee Advisory Extension Council.

Cathy Jones as "Rosie The Riveter"  1st Place Individual Winner!
Scout takes this annual challenge very seriously and has built a reputation of “staging” elaborate theme-oriented  entries.  This year we presented “USO Tour ‘43” complete with homemade goodies, patriotic decorations and Big Band music.  During the costume judging, Bob Hope (Don Spencer) welcomed everyone, assisted by Glenn Miller (Jason Sims) on his saxophone belting out a bluesy “In The Mood.”  Army grunt (Howard Anderson) got the crowd on its feet when he dropped to the floor after launching a grenade at the judge’s table, barely missing Judge Brian Kidwell but launching a round of laughter among the troops!  But the heroine of the day was Scout’s own “Rosie The Riveter” (Cathy Jones) who also coordinated this year’s collaborative theme.

Henry Uti Salutes The Troops!
Three years ago, Scout’s glass-walled TMC went under the sea to become an AES (Aquarium of Exotic Species).  The next year, we promoted our favorite musical heroes at “Rock Fest 2010” and last year’s theme “Crypt Of The Living Dead” was ghoulishly fun!  No one can say the hard-working folks at Scout don’t know how to play well together!
2009 "Under The Sea" with Scout!

Rock Fest 2010
2011 Crypt Inhabitants


Even Scout's Mascot gets into the act