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Press Release

As Southeastern U.S. Braces for Hurricane Matthew, Tolling Authorities Shift into Emergency Preparedness Mode

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, October 5, 2016
CONTACT: Bill Cramer, Communications Director
202-659-4620 x26 | 202-210-2962 (mobile)


MEDIA AVAILABILITY:  Hurricane Matthew Travel Preparedness

International Bridge, Tunnel & Turnpike Association Has Convened Tolling Industry to Study Emergency Weather Preparedness & Response Since Hurricane Sandy in 2012

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As the Southeastern United States braces for Hurricane Matthew to make an expected landfall later this week, tolling authorities up and down the east coast are already shifting into high gear to prepare for the extreme weather development.

Over the course of the last several years, the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA) - the worldwide association for the owners and operators of toll facilities and the businesses that serve them - has convened industry-leaders, experts and practitioners on severe weather, emergency management, and roadway operations to identify best practices — better ways to prepare and respond to severe weather situations that jeopardizes the public’s safety.

“Anticipating and preparing for the next severe weather situation, like Hurricane Matthew, is an essential part of toll authorities’ mission to deliver safe, efficient mobility,” said Patrick D. Jones, Executive Director and CEO of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA).  “Toll facility operations sweat the details, plan well ahead, have the necessary tools and equipment needed for severe weather events and know how and when to use them. In a crisis, the priorities are to open the roads for evacuations, clear a path to areas that are hardest hit, get supplies and first responders to the scene, repair and rebuild infrastructure that is damaged or destroyed, and restore normal operations as quickly as possible. None of that is possible without a comprehensive management plan, which is why toll authorities around the country continue to work together to find the best method to approach emergency preparedness.”

WHAT: National Transportation Expert Available to Discuss Hurricane Matthew Planning Underway
Major East Coast Travel Corridors

WHO: Patrick D. Jones, Executive Director and CEO of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association available for interviews from Washington, D.C.

To book Patrick D. Jones for an interview, please contact Bill Cramer at bcramer@ibtta.org or via phone at 202-210-2962 (mobile).

Jones continued, “Tolling authorities take a consistent, serious and professional approach to emergency preparedness and response. Roadway and maintenance crews have been training and preparing for this type of situation for years. Toll road customers can expect a strong emphasis on traffic safety and road clearance. Please pay attention to and follow any roadway advisories and guidance.”

In January 2013, just months after Storm Sandy devastated a swath of the Northeast, IBTTA held a forum to capture the front-line success stories and lessons learned from affected tolling authorities.  You can read a full report from the forum titled, Super Storm Sandy: Adaptation and Resilience, as well as view an Illustrated Audio Presentation.

IBTTA assembled transportation leaders to share best practices for communicating with the public during a severe weather event using both traditional and social media. A summary of these discussions appears in a Thematic Report

And IBTTA has brought Bryan Norcross, Senior Hurricane Specialist for The Weather Channel, to lead an industry discussion on “Resilience Around the World:  Protecting our Assets and Our Customers from Severe Weather.” The session focused on a variety of severe weather challenges and the steps that transportation agencies are taking to address them.  The report from that session is available on page 10-11, here.

The resources IBTTA has committed to this focus area are part of a dialogue to build greater resilience and adaptability across the tolling industry. IBTTA is invested in helping transportation agencies around the world prepare for severe weather events now and in the future.

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About IBTTA
The International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA) is the worldwide association for the owners and operators of toll facilities and the businesses that serve them. Founded in 1932, IBTTA has members in 20 countries on six continents. Through advocacy, thought leadership and education, members are implementing state-of-the-art, innovative user-based transportation financing solutions to address the critical infrastructure challenges of the 21st Century. For more information, visit www.ibtta.org or join us on Twitter @IBTTA or #TollRoads.