TRIP: Oklahoma drivers hit with $5 billion tab each year related to road conditions, congestion and safety issue

Photo Credit: Jimmy Emerson/FlickrPhoto Credit: Jimmy Emerson/Flickr

The Road Improvement Program’s (TRIP) latest report on Oklahoma shows bridge and road conditions, along with congestion, are costing drivers in the state an average of $2,200 a year, or $4.9 billion in total.

TRIP’s “Oklahoma Transportation by the Numbers: Meeting the State’s Need for Safe, Smooth and Efficient Mobility,” indicates that 28 percent of the state’s major state and locally maintained roads are in poor condition. Forty-two percent are in mediocre or fair condition. The urban areas of both Oklahoma City and Tulsa have 45 percent of roads in poor condition.

Sixteen percent of the state’s bridges are structurally deficient, with another 7 percent labeled as functionally obsolete.

Total vehicle operating costs (VOC) for drivers in Oklahoma have reached $1.8 billion each year, with congestion-related expenses hitting $2.1 billion and safety problems totaling an additional $1 billion.

“As an economic development professional, I can tell you from firsthand experience that transportation infrastructure is one of the most important factors when a company is determining whether to locate in a community,” says Roy Williams, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber president and CEO. “Transportation infrastructure truly is the veins and arteries of a healthy community’s economic success and quality of life.”

TRIP adds the Oklahoma Department of Transportation has had more than $190 million in budget reductions over the past six years, and will face projected cuts of $30.8 million per year for future construction projects over an eight-year period. The cuts are due to decreased state revenues, TRIP says, exacerbating the backlog of roughly $11 billion in needed bridge and road projects.

TRIP periodically releases state reports such as this one. They are available at