In a recent article, the Wall Street Journal interviewed WTI Research Ecologist Marcel Huijser about the wildlife crossing structures on U.S. 93 in Montana, and how roadkill numbers for large mammals have dropped by as much as 80% near highway sections served by these crossings. “Wildlife Crossings Get a Whole New Look” highlights WTI’s evaluation of the U.S. 93 crossing structures, and includes one of Marcel’s photos. The article also describes other recent and planned crossing structures in Wyoming, Washington, California and Louisiana. Read the whole article on the WSJ website.
WTI Research Scientist Matt Blank has been on the road this spring, presenting findings of fish passage research at several leading conferences. Along with his colleagues from the MSU Ecohydraulics Research Group and the US Fish and Wildlife Service, he was invited to speak at both the Annual Meeting of the Western Division of the American Fisheries in May, and at the International Conference on Engineering and Ecohydrology for Fish Passage in June. Topics for these presentations included:
· A Baseline Swimming Assessment for Arctic Grayling: Characterizing the Volitional Swimming Performance of Arctic Grayling to Inform Passage Studies
· Arctic Grayling and Denil Fishways: A Study to Determine How Water Depth Affects Passage Success of Arctic Grayling through Denil Fishways
· Swimming Performance of Sauger in Relation to Fish Passage
The research team conducts studies at MSU, at the Bozeman Fish Technology Center, and in the field. Their studies explore how irrigation installations, flow management structures, and other infrastructure serve to prevent, limit, and allow successful fish passage for various species. The findings can inform design improvements and conservation efforts for species of concern.
Another Montana Commuter Challenge is in the books, and WTI made a solid showing in this year’s standings. Logging 781 miles over 98 trips, we just barely missed the top ten, falling in line behind Bangtail Bikes with 101 trips. Together we saved 765.38 lbs of CO2 emissions and burned 38,269 calories. That’s approximately 163 tacos, for something easier to wrap your head around. 😊
Sixty teams participated in the Bozeman Commuter Challenge this year, making up a significant portion of the 171 teams statewide. We’re looking forward to an even bigger crowd next year as we work with businesses and employers around Bozeman to encourage active transportation and sustainable commutes!
In a recent press release, MSU describes CHAPTA, a proposed WTI program to study how to safely integrate driverless technology into the nation’s trucking fleet.
View the article: http://www.montana.edu/news/16951/msu-s-wti-launches-program-to-study-safe-integration-of-semi-autonomous-trucks
Visit the CHAPTA web page: http://wti-truckplatoon.org
The National Center for Rural Road Safety (Safety Center) and the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) are co-hosting a FREE, 1.5-hour online webinar about ITE’s new Vision Zero Toolbox. The toolbox showcases best practices, analytical techniques, policy guidance, and communication and educational tools for Vision Zero (the goal of zero traffic fatalities among all road users) to make them easily accessible to practitioners.
The webinar will be offered on Thursday June 1, 2017 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Mountain Time). To register for the webinar, please click here. Instructions on accessing the webinar will be sent after your registration is confirmed.
Rob Ament has just returned from a week long meeting in India hosted by the Science for Nature and People Partnership (SNAPP). India currently faces numerous wildlife protection challenges; for example, protected areas are often too small to support viable populations of wide-ranging species, such as elephants and tigers, especially if highways and other development severs habitat connectivity between protected areas. Rob was invited by the Landscape Connectivity in India Working Group to give a presentation and provide his expertise for the workshop, during which participants developed strategies to address the impact of transportation systems on ecological connectivity surrounding various protected areas in the region.
The workshop was held near Nagarhole National Park in the Western Ghats mountain range (a UNESCO World Heritage site) of southwest India. Rob shared these photos from his amazing wildlife viewing opportunity within the National Park.
The Journal of Cold Regions Engineering has published “Effectiveness of Liquid Agricultural By-products and Solid Complex Chlorides for Snow and Ice Control,” authored by Anbu Muthumani and Xianming Shi. The article summarizes their work to conduct a laboratory investigation of the thermal properties, ice melting behavior, and corrosivity of agro-based deicers, in order to compare their effectiveness to traditional deicers.
Muthumani, Anburaj and Shi, Xianming (2017). Effectiveness of Liquid Agricultural By-products and Solid Complex Chlorides for Snow and Ice Control. Journal of Cold Regions Engineering, Vol 31, Issue 1 (March 2017). http://ascelibrary.org/doi/abs/10.1061/%28ASCE%29CR.1943-5495.0000112
A WTI project on developing viable transit options in Wyoming is the subject of a feature article in the Spring 2017 issue of Rural Connections Magazine. David Kack, Jaydeep Chaudhari, and Taylor Lonsdale authored “Exploring Transit Feasibility in Park County, Wyoming,” which highlighted their collaboration with the Powell Economic Partnership, Inc. and the Forward Cody, Inc. to identify transportation alternatives that nurture economic development and expand job opportunities for residents. The full article is available to read here
Two WTI staff members received advanced degrees at the Montana State University Spring Commencement Ceremony on May 6. Doug Galarus earned his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the College of Engineering, and Carla Little received her Master’s in Higher Education from the College of Education, Health and Human Development.
The Center for Health and Safety Culture (CHSC) will host a webinar entitled “What is the Positive Culture Framework?” which will introduce the Center’s approach to improving health and safety at the community level. This framework builds on the shared values, beliefs, and attitudes that already exist in a culture to promote health and safety, and uses a process that can be adapted to address any public health or safety issue. Presenter Katie Dively will share examples of how PCF has been applied in areas such as traffic safety, substance abuse, and violence prevention. The webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, June 14 at 12 noon (Mountain Time). To register, click here. (Event password: chsc)