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Blog Archive: March 2019

A hand holding three dollar bills

How to avoid the bad apples in crowdfunding

March 28

Whether it’s an emergency surgery or an idea for an amazing new product, crowdfunding has changed the way we finance the more unexpected or ambitious events in our lives. But as with so many other things in life, a few bad apples can spoil it for the whole bunch. For example, someone hacked into a Wisconsin girl’s Facebook account to set up a GoFundMe campaign that would benefit Jake Thomas Patterson, Jayme Closs’ kidnapper. The girl was receiving death threats and harassment for it, even though she had nothing to do with it...

A motorcycle training instructor watches as a rider enters a series of traffic cones

Put 35 years of motorcycle training experience to work for you

March 25

We can all agree that this Minnesota winter has been brutal. Which means wheeling your motorcycle out of the garage and taking it for the first spin of the year will be that much sweeter. But spring here in Minnesota is also known as pothole season, and we’re getting more than our fair share this year. Add to that the extra sand and gravel, icy patches caused by snow runoff freezing at night, and motorists who have spent the last few months not sharing the road with motorcyclists, and you have some potentially dangerous riding conditions on your hands...

DPS social media coordinator monitoring social media accounts on computer screens

Lead the way in safety by following us

March 21

The thing about being the Department of Public Safety is that safety information needs to be … well, public in order to work. To get the word out, we use all kinds of channels: TV, radio, billboards, and of course social media – but one of our most valuable public safety communications assets is the person you see when you look in the mirror. Our goal is to make Minnesota a safer place in which to work, play and live, and we need you to help us get the message out. One way you can do that is by following us on social media and sharing important messages with your friends and family...

An older woman in the driver's seat of a vehicle

Aging and driving: How to have the tough conversation

March 18

No one wants to think about – let alone talk about – their parents and other loved ones losing their independence as they age. But the reality is that age often brings with it a host of health issues – failing eyesight, impaired mobility, even cognitive and memory issues – that can impair your loved one’s ability to drive safely. Don’t wait until you get a call from a first responder saying your senior loved one has been in a crash – maybe even injured or killed – to start talking about whether they should continue driving. Learn how to have that tough conversation now...

A driver performs a field sobriety test for two officers during a traffic stop

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the traditional way (it’s not what you think)

March 14

Believe it or not, a traditional celebration of St. Patrick’s Day doesn’t involve getting drunk on green beer -- or anything else, for that matter. It used to be customary (and still is, in parts of Ireland) to celebrate the anniversary of the death of Ireland’s patron saint with song and dance, feasting with family and friends; attending parades, and watching sporting events such as soccer and horse racing. Think of it as a combination of Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July. Notice that you can do many...

ECN 911 analyst Dustin Leslie, ECN Director Dana Wahlberg, DHHSD supervisor Marie Koehler and DHHSD Director Dan Millikin

Communication equity for the deaf community

March 11

At a mere 15 months old, Text-to-911 has already been used copiously by deaf and hearing people alike. And last week at the Minnesota state capitol rotunda, it was recognized by the deaf, deafblind and hard-of hearing community as helping to contribute to communication equity – that is, the concept that everyone, regardless of ability, should be able to gain access to the information and services they need. It’s called the Access Award, and you can learn more about it – and how Text-to-911 earned it...

A battery being inserted into a smoke alarm

Spring forward on the right foot this weekend

March 7

The meteorological first day of spring has come and gone, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow, and yet most of Minnesota is still buried under several inches of snow. No, spring may not be springing just yet, but at least you’ll have a little more daylight after you change your clocks for Daylight Saving Time this weekend. As long as you’re running around the house changing clocks, you might as well grab a handful of batteries for your smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms. In the same way that a car isn’t useful to you if it’s rusting out in your garage, or your cell phone won’t do...

Minnesota REAL ID driver's license

REAL ID turns six months old

March 4

By six months old, most humans are rolling over, sitting up on their own, and starting to eat solid food. REAL ID, which will be six months old on April 1, is similarly accomplished. Between Oct. 1, 2018 and Feb. 22, 2019, almost 60,000 Minnesotans applied for a REAL ID. Interested in joining their ranks? As you’ve probably heard, it requires a bit more documentation to get your REAL ID than it does for a standard driver’s license or ID card. Learn what you’ll need to gather and how much it will cost...