Blog Archive: January 2021

Workers walk along a road next to a section of the new Enbridge Line 3 pipeline

How MNOPS is making Line 3 safe for Minnesota

Jan. 28

You might have heard about the construction of the new Enbridge Line 3 pipeline, but you may not have a handle on who is involved and how. One of the most important things to know is safety is a priority, and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Pipeline Safety (DPS-MNOPS) is an integral part of making sure this project is completed safely and correctly. First, a bit of background. The original Line 3 was built in the 1960s. The crude-oil pipeline extends 1,097 miles...

A Minnesota license plate with a 2021 registration tab

This winter, make sure your tabs stick around

Jan. 25

The cold, snowy Minnesota winters seem to affect everything we do – driving our cars and heating our homes, for example. It can even affect how we display our vehicles’ registration. If your tabs are up for renewal in the winter months, you may need to take some extra steps to make sure they stay put on your license plate. Cold temperatures, road salt or slush residue can prevent your sticker from properly adhering. As always, you’ll want to clean the area where you’re placing the sticker...

A car crash scene with two troopers doing crash reconstruction

Honor the dead by planning ahead

Jan. 21

Most of us would probably like to simply forget 2020 ever existed. The temptation is to wipe the slate clean and move on. But if we do that, we risk not learning. And if we forget the nearly 400 people who died on Minnesota roads in 2020, we dishonor their memories. Instead, we remember each one of them, and keep talking about how and why they died so that we can prevent more tragedies. Preliminary reports show there were 398 traffic deaths on Minnesota roads in 2020, compared...

A young woman sitting on a swing at a playground

It takes all of us to stop human trafficking

Jan. 14

When you see the words “human trafficking,” what comes to mind? A young woman kidnapped and bound by a stranger? People forced to make shoes, clothing or electronics for some foreign company? This is often the way these crimes are portrayed on TV and in the movies, so it might surprise you to know that human trafficking takes place right here in Minnesota. In fact, it happens in all corners of the state, right under our very noses. Which means it’s up to us to do something about it....

The SEOC floor torn up after a sewer pipe broke

The new SEOC facility will help Minnesotans get through their worst day

Jan. 11

The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) has now been active for more than 300 days during the sustained COVID-19 response effort. The activation is the longest in Minnesota history. During the pandemic, SEOC staff worked inside this facility as it experienced a burst sewer pipe, bullets piercing a street-side window, and a break-in. They still keep at it as the focus on COVID-19 response shifts from testing...

2020 fire deaths infographic

Fire deaths: Bringing down a trend

Jan. 7

Whenever you look at statistics on anything, it’s natural to see peaks and valleys. But when those statistics represent deaths, what you want to avoid are upward trends. That’s why the preliminary numbers for 2020 fire deaths in Minnesota are so disturbing: They’re up 13 percent over 2019 fire deaths, which in turn were up 14 percent over 2018. As usual, smoking is the leading cause of fire deaths in Minnesota, with gas-related explosions in second place. It’s frustrating, because such deaths are entirely preventable. So although we can’t go back in time...

A criminal background check form

Your juvenile record does not define you

Jan. 4

A juvenile record does not define you. Minnesota’s juvenile justice system balances public safety with an individual’s responsibility to follow the law. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) maintains records on people under 18 who commit felonies and gross misdemeanors. It’s important to know how a juvenile record can affect your life as an adult. The most common misconception about juvenile records is that they disappear when you turn 18. This is not true. Some, like juvenile...