By Elsa Heidorn
Laramie, WY – Leaders on the Wind River Indian Reservation say they're eager to reduce the number of highway deaths on their land. A transportation planner for the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes said in a statement that the Wind River Reservation now leads the nation in pedestrian deaths. He also said that car crash fatalities on Indian reservations have risen more than 55 percent since 1997. Meantime, that number has dropped for the rest of the country. Cody Beers of the Wyoming Department of transportation says bad roads contribute to the problem. "A lot of the roads out there are narrow with no shoulders, they have steep embankments off the edge of the highways," he said. "So we're hoping not only to identify those problems but also any other things we can work on in a fairly quick time frame to improve safety out there," he added. To do that, Beers will meet with reservation leaders tomorrow in Ethete to come up with solutions.