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Technology expected to help drivers in Arizona dust storms

Posted at 12:47 PM, Jun 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-23 16:55:58-04

PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona's monsoon is here, state transportation planners plan to begin installing a new dust-detection system on Interstate 10.

The Arizona Department of Transportation recorded 85 dust-related crashes along the busy freeway from Phoenix to Tucson from 2010 to 2015.

The Arizona Republic reports the state received a $54 million federal grant in 2016 to widen sections of I-10 and implement a project that would reduce dust-related crashes.

The system to be put in this fall includes long-range radar set near Picacho Peak that can detect approaching dust storms from 50 miles (80 kilometers) away.

Short-range radars will be used to detect dust particles every mile between areas where most dust-related I-10 crashes occur.

Also planned are electronic billboards to display warning messages readable in both traffic directions.