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Three States Adopt New Way to Prevent Tailgating

June 23, 2006

BUFFALO, Minn. -- Minnesota will be one of the first states to use “distance dots” to discourage drivers from tailgating, according to The Associated Press. A two-mile stretch of Highway 55 near Brainerd, Minn., will be marked with the painted dots, which appeared first in Pennsylvania and most recently in Maryland. Police in South Center, Pa., noted a significant reduction in crashes and speeding on Highway 11 after dots were added in 2000.The dots are coupled with signs telling how many dots should be between vehicles (creating at least a three-second gap) so that drivers have enough time to make emergency stops and avoid rear-end collisions, which make up one out of every four traffic crashes in Wright County, Minn. Officials say tailgating is estimated to be involved in 80 percent of crashes at intersections on Highway 55 and that tailgating was a factor in crashes that injured 3,890 people and killed four in 2004, according to The Associated Press.
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