ST. PAUL – With a dedicated DWI officer, focused traffic safety enforcement and outreach programs to local schools, agencies in Olmsted County are being recognized with the Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) Commissioner’s Award from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS).
DPS Commissioner Mona Dohman and the Office of Traffic Safety will honor the Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office and its partner agencies during a recognition luncheon this summer.
Keeping the Roads Safe
The Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office is the lead agency on the TZD Enforcement Grant, collaborating with the Rochester Police Department and the Minnesota State Patrol.
Olmsted County and its partners work tirelessly to keep their roads safe by focusing on seat belt violations, distracted driving, drunk driving and speed. In addition to participating in the state’s major traffic safety campaigns, Olmsted County’s traffic safety efforts include:
- Having a dedicated DWI officer. In 2017, that officer arrested 101 drunk drivers.
- Distributing a monthly newsletter focusing on traffic safety efforts.
- Conducting community outreach including working closely with area high schools, educating the public and media efforts.
The Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety (DPS-OTS) selected Olmsted County for protecting the county’s citizens through effective traffic safety efforts and their long term commitment to the TZD initiative.
“Olmsted County and its partners remain committed to traffic safety and educating their communities on the importance of following safe driving behaviors,” said Department of Public Safety Commissioner Mona Dohman. “It’s an honor to recognize their efforts and thank them for helping save lives in Olmsted County.”
The Commissioner’s Award highlights the exceptional partnership of municipal, county and state law enforcement agencies working together on a highly visible, well-publicized traffic safety enforcement program funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Grant-funded agencies are nominated for the Commissioner’s Award based on several criteria, including:
- Continuous coordinated enforcement efforts throughout the year on behaviors that impact Minnesotans in tragic ways – lack of seat belt use, distracted driving, drunk driving and speeding.
- Community awareness and educational activities such as child passenger safety clinics and traffic safety education.
- Timely and accurate reporting of extra enforcement campaign results.
About the Minnesota Department Public Safety
DPS comprises 11 divisions where 2,100 employees operate programs in the areas of law enforcement, crime victim assistance, traffic safety, alcohol and gambling, emergency communications, fire safety, pipeline safety, driver licensing, vehicle registration and emergency management. DPS activity is anchored by three core principles: education, enforcement and prevention.
About the Office of Traffic Safety
The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety (DPS-OTS) designs, implements and coordinates federally funded traffic safety enforcement and education programs to improve driver behaviors and reduce the deaths and serious injuries that occur on Minnesota roads. DPS-OTS also administers state funds for the motorcycle safety program and for the child seats for needy families program.
DPS-OTS is an anchoring partner of the state’s Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) traffic safety program. A primary vision of the TZD program is to create a safe driving culture in Minnesota in which motorists support a goal of zero road fatalities by practicing and promoting safe and smart driving behavior. TZD focuses on the application of four strategic areas to reduce crashes – education, enforcement, engineering, and emergency medical and trauma response.
Recent DPS-OTS Activity and Statistics