RICHMOND – Traditionally the Memorial Day weekend signals the start of the summer travel season and significant increases in traffic on most interstate corridors across Virginia. Although highway traffic volumes are not expected to be as considerable this holiday weekend as in past years, traffic has still been steadily increasing in recent weeks as portions of the Commonwealth have transitioned to Phase I of the Governor's "Forward Virginia" plan. With more taking advantage of loosened restrictions, Virginia State Police is reminding all drivers of the importance and necessity of exercising safe and legal driving practices. Read more
CHAPEL HILL, N.C., May 13, 2020— The Walk Friendly Communities program (WFC) recognized ten U.S. cities for their commitment to prioritize pedestrians and create safe, comfortable and inviting places to walk. The Walk Friendly Community designations include Gold-level recognition for Boulder, Colorado; Charlottesville, Virginia; Evanston, Illinois; and Somerville, Massachusetts. Read more
RICHMOND – Wearing the proper gear, from head to toe, can often save a motorcyclist's life during a crash. As of May 1 this year, 17 motorcyclists have died and 243 were injured in 321 crashes on Virginia roadways; in 2019, 89 motorcycle riders lost their lives.
The video reminds all motorcyclists that, no matter how they roll, to ride with full gear on, because it could save their life. The video is posted on DMV's website, social media, and YouTube. Read more
Virginia DMV Highway Safety Office Director John Saunders said as of April 24, crashes overall in Virginia had decreased nearly 80 percent since Gov. Northam’s stay-at-home order went into effect in March but the number of fatal and non-fatal speed-related crashes increased compared to 2019. Read more
RICHMOND – With the Commonwealth of Virginia's unbuckled fatality rate at 52 percent, the Department of Motor Vehicles is pushing harder than ever for everyone to wear a seat belt.
DMV officials and law enforcement officers serving in Lee, Wise and Buchanan counties gathered together recently to formulate and execute the Local Heroes Seat Belt Awareness Initiative. The goal of the project is to reduce the number of fatalities on Virginia's roads involving people who are not buckled up. Read more
RICHMOND – Unfortunately, thousands of drunk, speeding and reckless drivers kept Virginia State Police busy and put countless lives at risk during the 2019 July 4th holiday weekend across the Commonwealth. Preliminary reports indicate seven people died in six traffic crashes during the holiday statistical counting period that began at 12:01 a.m. July 3, 2019 and concluded at midnight July 5, 2019. Read more
RICHMOND – Twenty-six motorcyclists have died on Virginia roadways so far this year, and as the summer season nears, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) urges motorcyclists – and motorists – to travel with caution.
Overall, motorcyclist fatalities decreased 18 percent last year (88) in Virginia compared to 2017 (107). However, in 2017, Virginia recorded the highest number of motorcyclist fatalities in a decade. While the number of deaths decreased in 2018, they are still higher than the number of fatalities reported in the four years prior to 2017. Read more
The Henrico County Police Division recently conducted its annual review of pedestrian-involved crashes. Based on initial analysis of crash data from 2017 and 2018, three trends have emerged: pedestrians wearing dark and/or non-reflective clothing; pedestrians under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs; pedestrian failure to cross at controlled intersection. These trends are not representative of all pedestrian-involved crashes.
RICHMOND - The outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to change the behaviors of Virginia's motorists leading to crash, injury, and fatality reduction may be nominated for the 2019 Virginia Governor's Transportation Safety Awards. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles' Highway Safety Office is accepting nominations through March 15, 2019 for 13 different transportation safety categories.
Entries will be judged on creativity, imagination, uniqueness, the impact on the community, and the use of volunteers and private sector resources. Individuals, organizations, businesses or government agencies are eligible for these awards based on transportation safety activities and programs that took place during 2018. Read more
RICHMOND – The Virginia State Police Safety Division is rolling out a newly-designed vehicle safety approval inspection sticker that now includes a traffic safety message. Effective Jan. 1, 2019, all certified Virginia inspection stations began issuing the sticker which has been reduced from 2.75 inches in height to 2 inches and from 4 inches in length to 3 inches. The year of expiration is now permanently affixed to the right side of the sticker, with the only insert being the month of expiration. Even though the overall size has been reduced, the month has been enlarged to provide better visibility.
"The change in size is in response to the feedback State Police received from Virginians following the sticker's relocation to the bottom left corner of the windshield in 2018," said Captain R.C. Maxey Jr., Virginia State Police Safety Division Commander. "We heard from a number of motorists who had difficulty seeing around the sticker, so we worked to reduce its size to slightly smaller than the average credit card." Read more
RICHMOND - The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has scheduled regional workshops to assist nonprofits, state agencies and law enforcement agencies with the 2020 highway safety grant application submission process.
Beginning February 1, 2019, DMV will accept applications for grants to support programs throughout Virginia that strive to reduce traffic deaths and injuries. The deadline for highway safety grant submissions is February 28, 2019. Read more
RICHMOND – Over the next week, thousands of Virginians will take to the highway to travel for the holidays. This weekend – Life Saver Weekend – signifies the start of the Christmas travel period and serves as a reminder to motorists to #Drive2SaveLives and celebrate safely so everyone will #ArriveAlive.
Since Dec. 1, 2018, traffic crashes in Virginia have claimed the lives of 23 people, including 15 drivers, two passengers, three pedestrians, two motorcyclists and one bicyclist. Despite a grim start to the month, preliminary reports indicate traffic fatalities are down 3.5 percent to date in 2018 (Jan. 1, 2018 - Nov. 12, 2018) compared to the same period last year, falling from 799 deaths in 2017 to 771 so far this year. Read more
RICHMOND (Dec. 3)—Governor Ralph Northam today issued Executive Directive Two which establishes an Executive Leadership Team on Highway Safety that is charged with reducing the rising number of fatalities on Virginia's roadways. The team is comprised of representatives from the Virginia Departments of Motor Vehicles, Transportation, Health, Education, and State Police, and is led by the Deputy Secretaries of Transportation and Public Safety and Homeland Security.
"Nearly every crash is preventable and it's important that we focus on altering the behaviors that threaten the safety of the citizens who use our roads every day," said Governor Northam. "The Executive Leadership Team will work proactively to drive a positive traffic safety culture in Virginia—I encourage all Virginians to get involved and offer input to help ensure we're tackling the highway safety issues that people across the Commonwealth are most concerned about."
As part of the Governor Executive Directive, Virginia Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine and Virginia Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran are inviting Virginians to take action against distraction on Virginia roadways by participating in the #YourSayVA Digital Town Hall on highway safety. To participate, visit the Commonwealth's new highway safety portal, TZDVA.org, and click the icon for the #YourSayVA Digital Town Hall to access the anonymous survey. Submissions will be accepted until December 31.Read more
Governor Ralph Northam today urged Virginians to help drive change in the commonwealth's traffic safety culture by joining the Toward Zero Deaths Virginia movement. Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) is a national strategy on highway safety that uses a unified approach to change driver behavior and improve highway safety with a goal of ultimately reducing the number of traffic-related serious injuries or deaths to zero.
To launch the TZD initiative in the commonwealth and mobilize Virginians to take action, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles and Virginia Department of Transportation, with help from safety partners, created a new website at TZDVA.org. Read more
RICHMOND – The 2018 Thanksgiving holiday weekend proved deadly for 12 drivers and passengers, to include a City of Winchester police officer. During the statistical counting period that began at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 21, and concluded at midnight Sunday, Nov. 25, preliminary reports indicate 11 traffic crashes across the Commonwealth claimed the lives of nine drivers, two passengers and a motorcyclist. During the 2017 five-day Thanksgiving statistical counting period, 14 people were killed in traffic crashes on Virginia's highways – the most killed over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend since 2013. Read more
RICHMOND – The nearly 16 percent of Virginians who still do not wear their seat belts should be warned – state and local police officers will be out in full force across Virginia looking for unbelted motorists during this month's "Click It or Ticket" campaign.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) announced today the results of this year's seat belt survey, which revealed a use rate of 84.1 percent among Virginia motorists, down from last year's record high of 85.3 percent. The survey results come as "Click It or Ticket" kicks off across Virginia. The campaign, which runs through November 30, combines high visibility enforcement of seat belt and child safety seat laws with outreach and education. Read more
RICHMOND – As Thanksgiving approaches, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) urges motorists to be thankful for designated drivers.
Last year, 14 people died in Virginia crashes during the five-day Thanksgiving holiday (Wednesday, November 22-Sunday, November 26, 2017). Nearly half of those fatalities (6) – and more than 50 injuries – occurred in alcohol-related crashes. In all of 2017, 248 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes in Virginia; that's approximately 30 percent of all crash fatalities in the Commonwealth. Read more
RICHMOND – The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) begins issuing optional REAL ID compliant driver's licenses and identification cards today.
A REAL ID compliant credential can be used for all of the same purposes as your current driver's license – including driving, voting and accessing federal benefits – but, beginning October 1, 2020, also can be used as the federal identification which will then be necessary for boarding domestic flights and entering secure federal facilities and military bases. Read more
RICHMOND – Traffic deaths in Virginia reached a three-year high during the 2018 Labor Day weekend. According to preliminary reports, a dozen individuals were killed in 11 fatal crashes during the four-day statistical counting period (12:01 a.m. Aug. 31, 2018 – 12 a.m. Sept. 3, 2018), which marks the highest number of crashes recorded since 2015 when 16 fatalities occurred over the holiday weekend. In 2017, there were five traffic crashes on Virginia's highways. Read more
RICHMOND – The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) wants to make sure all Virginians who decide to apply for an optional REAL ID compliant Virginia driver's license or ID bring the right documents to DMV. Beginning October 1, DMV will offer Virginians the option to upgrade their current Virginia driver's license or ID to a REAL ID compliant credential. First-time applicants will also have the choice between a REAL ID compliant or standard credential. Read more
Failing to "click it" is leading to more than a ticket for teenagers in Virginia. Through the end of June 2018 in Virginia, the number of teenagers who have died because they failed to put on their seat belts has doubled compared to the same time frame in 2017. Read more
RICHMOND – Fourth of July 2018 marked a busy holiday for Virginia State Police when it came to arresting impaired drivers and citing speeding motorists. In addition, a total of three fatal crashes occurred in the counties of Augusta, Culpeper and Northampton during the two-day, holiday, statistical counting period.
Once again this year, Virginia State Police participated in Operation C.A.R.E. (Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort), which is a traffic safety initiative that began 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, July 3, 2018 and concluded Wednesday, July 4, 2018, at midnight. The state-sponsored, national program encourages law enforcement agencies to increase visibility and traffic enforcement efforts on major travel holidays, like the Fourth of July.
The 2018 Fourth of July Operation C.A.R.E. initiative resulted in troopers stopping and arresting a total of 42 drunk drivers during the 48-hour statistical counting period. Troopers also stopped and issued summonses to 4,911 speeders and 1,251 reckless drivers. Troopers cited 429 safety belt violations and 114 child restraint violations. Read more
RICHMOND – Virginia highways will be bustling this week as millions of people take to the road for the Independence Day holiday, and Virginia State Police is urging motorists to ensure safety and celebration go hand-in-hand.
In just the first six months of this year, at least 368 individuals, including drivers, passengers, pedestrians and motorcyclists, have lost their lives in traffic crashes. Of the 843 fatal crashes on Virginia's highways last year, 208 involved a distracted driver and 248 were alcohol related.
"Summer days are filled with celebration, including vacations, outdoor festivals and backyard cookouts, but no matter where your plans take you, please make safety your priority," said Col. Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. "Regardless of the distance you're traveling this week – across the country or around the corner – remember to buckle up, eliminate distractions and never drive buzzed or drunk. If we all do our small part, we increase everyone's chances of arriving alive." Read more
RICHMOND – Virginia experienced its fewest number of traffic deaths during the 2018 Memorial Day weekend - the lowest within at least the past five years. Preliminary reports indicate six traffic deaths occurred on Virginia highways during this year's statistical counting period, which began at 12:01 a.m. Friday (May 25, 2018) and concluded at midnight Monday (May 28, 2018).
"This decrease in the Memorial Day weekend traffic fatalities and the slowing of traffic deaths for 2018 are both proof that we can save lives on Virginia's highways by working together," said Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. "The Virginia State Police, in collaboration with our local police and sheriff's offices, will continue our stepped up education and enforcement efforts as we head into the busy summer travel months. We simply ask for Virginians to do their part by always buckling up, complying with speed limits, driving distraction free and never driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs." Read more
VIRGINIA BEACH - Virginia's top transportation safety advocates were honored Wednesday, May 23 during a ceremony at Virginia's Highway Safety Summit in Virginia Beach. DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb, the Governor's Highway Safety Representative, presented the 2018 Governor's Transportation Safety Awards.
The following individuals and organizations were honored for outstanding contributions to transportation safety... Read more
RICHMOND – As travelers plan their vacations and pack their bags for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend, Virginia State Police is urging motorists to make sure traffic safety is at the top of their agenda. Already this year, 280 individuals, including drivers, passengers, pedestrians and motorcyclists, have lost their lives in traffic crashes. The startling number comes on the heels of an almost 11 percent increase in traffic deaths during 2017.
"Last year, 843 people were killed on Virginia's highways. On average, that's more than two people a day, 16 people a week and 70 people a month. But no matter how you count these tragic incidents, there are just too many," said Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. "The sad fact is that many traffic crashes are preventable, but in order to prevent them we all have to do our part by buckling up, complying with speed limits, eliminating distractions and never driving impaired." Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – As part of National Bicycle Safety Month, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) urges bicyclists and drivers alike to respect the rules of the road – and fellow road users.
"Recent DMV statistics illustrate the importance of bicycle safety with more than 600 bicyclists injured last year. The number of bicyclists killed in Virginia crashes increased 30 percent, from 10 fatalities in 2016 to 13 in 2017," said Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine. "One way bicyclists can increase their safety is by always wearing a proper-fitting helmet and teaching their children to wear one as well. Like seat belts in cars, a helmet can save your life in a crash." Read more
RICHMOND – Governor Ralph Northam, Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), and members of the General Assembly celebrated the eight finalists in DMV's Take Action Against Distraction License Plate Design Contest on Thursday, April 12 at the Capitol in Richmond.
Governor Northam announced Kaya Windpainter as the winner of the license plate design contest. Kaya received a $1,000 prize, courtesy of AAA. Her design concept will be available on license plates this summer. Read more
RICHMOND – Governor Ralph Northam today designated April in Virginia as Highway Safety Month. With highway fatalities alarmingly on the rise in the Commonwealth and nationwide, Governor Northam called on his public safety and transportation agencies to coordinate efforts to elevate awareness to save lives.
In 2017, 843 people died on Virginia's roadways, a 20 percent increase over the Commonwealth's low of 700 highway deaths in 2014. Read more
There were 248 deaths linked to drunk driving in Virginia last year. There were 208 fatalities resulting from crashes in which distracted driving was determined to be a factor, but officials think the actual number is more grim. Read more
The creator of the winning license plate design concept will receive a $1,000 prize, courtesy of AAA Mid- Atlantic, sponsor of the Take Action Against Distraction License Plate Design Contest.
The public has eight different license plate design concepts, created by Virginia high school students, from to which to choose. "We want the public to take an active role in battling distracted driving," said DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb. "One of these plates will be instrumental in helping raise awareness about this important issue." Read more
RICHMOND - The outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to change the behaviors of Virginia's motorists leading to crash, injury, and fatality reduction may be nominated for the 2018 Virginia Governor's Transportation Safety Awards. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles' Highway Safety Office is accepting nominations through March 16, 2018 for 13 different transportation safety categories. Read more
RICHMOND - The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles' Highway Safety Office (VAHSO) has scheduled regional workshops to assist nonprofits, state agencies and law enforcement agencies with the 2019 highway safety grant application submission process.
Beginning February 1, 2018, VAHSO will accept applications for grants to support programs throughout Virginia that strive to reduce traffic deaths and injuries. The deadline for highway safety grant submissions is February 28, 2018.
Interested applicants are required to attend a workshop and then apply online at dmvNOW.com. Workshops are currently being scheduled and will continue through January 31, 2018. Read more
Beginning around February 1, 2018, all agencies in Virginia will be required to submit requests to the TREDS System Owner at DMV whenever agency personnel need new user accounts for TREDS/ReportBeam. These requests will, under most circumstances, need to be submitted by a TREDS Department Administrator at the local agency. This is a change from the current procedure. Read more
RICHMOND – Effective Jan. 1, 2018, Virginia state inspection stickers will no longer be affixed to the bottom center of a vehicle's windshield. Due to new innovations in the automotive industry, the state inspection stickers will be placed in the bottom left corner of the windshield, when viewed from inside the vehicle. This change in location will also apply to the placement of any other authorized stickers. There have been no changes made to the size or appearance of the existing vehicle inspection sticker.
The relocation stems from the fact that automobile manufacturers now offer crash avoidance technology in many of their vehicles. In such vehicles, the new technology utilizes the center of the windshield. Therefore the placement of items in that area, including stickers, could prevent crash avoidance systems from operating properly. Read more
RICHMOND – With overall traffic fatalities already on the increase, the 2017 Thanksgiving holiday weekend proved to be a deadly one for 10 individuals traveling on Virginia's highways. During the holiday statistical counting period, which began Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017, at 12:01 a.m. and continued through midnight Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, traffic crashes claimed the lives of eight drivers, one passenger and a pedestrian. As of Monday, Nov. 27, 2017, there have been 737 reported traffic deaths in Virginia, compared to 664 this date last year. Read more
RICHMOND – November's Click It or Ticket campaign is underway, and the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) reminds motorists to always buckle up before hitting the road this Thanksgiving – and every day.
State and local police officers across Virginia will be on the lookout for unbelted motorists during Click It or Ticket, which runs from November 20-December 1. Click It or Ticket combines high visibility enforcement of seat belt and child safety seat laws with outreach and education. Read more
RICHMOND – Traveling to spend time with family is a holiday tradition, and as millions hit the road this Thanksgiving, Virginia State Police urges motorists to drive to save lives so everyone arrives safely for the celebration.
Within the past two weeks, traffic crashes in Virginia have claimed the lives of 35 drivers and passengers, and nine pedestrians. From Jan. 1, 2017, to Nov. 16, 2017, preliminary reports indicate traffic crashes statewide have resulted in 710 deaths; compared to 640 deaths during the same timeframe in 2016. Read more
Hanover, VA – As millions of Americans get on the roads to travel home and spend the Thanksgiving holiday reconnecting with friends and loved ones, the Hanover County Sheriff's Office is serving them a reminder: "Make it to the Table: Don't Drink and Drive this Thanksgiving Eve."
The Wednesday night before Thanksgiving is a cultural phenomenon called "Thanksgiving Eve," an evening associated with drinking and a big night for bars. From 2012 to 2016, more than 800 people died in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday period, making it the deadliest holiday on our roads. Read more
RICHMOND – From March through July of this year, medical emergency departments across the Commonwealth each month have fielded more than 700 visits by Virginia residents for treatment for unintentional opioid/heroin or unspecified substance overdoses. Of those 700 overdose visits, approximately 160 resulted from heroin usage in June and another 150 in July. In the first half of 2016, fatal drug overdoses across the state increased by 35 percent.* Read more
RICHMOND – The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) invites Virginia high school students to enter a new license plate design contest. The "Take Action Against Distraction" License Plate Design Contest begins November 1 and is open to all Virginia high school students (grades 9-12). Virginians will have the final say on the design concept chosen for a new license plate highlighting the issue of distracted driving. Read more
RICHMOND – A two-day “Drive to Save Lives” traffic safety initiative that spanned 15 states along the Interstate 95 corridor last week resulted in more than 650 total traffic summonses and arrests by Virginia State Police.
On Friday and Saturday, Oct. 20-21, 2017, Virginia troopers cited 195 speeders and 61 drivers were charged with aggressive driving or other dangerous moving violations. Troopers also cited 35 motorists for failing to wear a seat belt and another 14 for child restraint violations. A total of 11 drunk drivers were taken off Virginia’s roadways and arrested by troopers. Other citations issued include inspection violations, equipment violations, expired safety inspections for commercial vehicles and size or weight violations. In addition, Virginia troopers apprehended 21 wanted persons and made 42 criminal arrests. Read more
MARTINSVILLE, Va. — The Virginia State Police debuted Tuesday (Oct. 24) a new safety video highlighting the "Move Over" law, which will be featured this weekend during the First Data 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at the Martinsville Speedway. Read more
RICHMOND – The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) announced today that Virginia’s seat belt use rate has reached a record high of 85.3 percent. However, as 236 unbelted motorists have died in crashes this year in the Commonwealth, DMV, Virginia law enforcement and nonprofit partners continue their efforts toward 100 percent compliance.
“Virginia’s seat belt use rate has averaged around 79 percent, so anytime we see that number go up, it’s a great thing,” said DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb, the Governor’s Highway Safety Representative. “But, as long as Virginians continue to lose their lives because they aren’t wearing their seat belt, our work is not yet complete.” Read more
Every day, an average of two people die and more than 100 are injured in highway crashes in Virginia. Last year, more than 700 people died in fatal crashes. And from 2011 to 2015, there were more than 3,000 fatalities and nearly 46,000 serious crashes. These just aren't numbers; these are family members, friends and love ones.
To eliminate traffic fatalities and serious crashes, a number of agencies — including VDOT, DMV, and Virginia State Police — have come together to implement the "Arrive Alive" Virginia Strategic Highway Safety Plan. The plan lays out data-driven solutions to address highway safety issues and move the state toward zero deaths on the Commonwealth's roadways. Read more
RICHMOND – In the past seven days, 15 people have died in traffic crashes on Virginia highways across the Commonwealth. That alarming death toll includes drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and a 9-year-old bicyclist. Tragically, this year is proving to be a deadly one for Virginia’s highways. As of Friday, Sept. 1, 2017, there have been 529 reported traffic deaths in Virginia, compared to 477 this same date last year.
“The fact that we have lost 50 more lives in traffic crashes this year than in 2016 should be of major concern for all Virginians, especially as we head into the heavily-traveled Labor Day weekend,” said Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “State police will have all available troopers out on patrol for the extended holiday weekend, but we need every driver and passenger committed to also doing their part to make their travels as safe as possible.” Read more
With a third of all U.S. traffic deaths over the Labor Day holiday period involving drunk drivers and Virginia averaging a double-digit number of traffic fatalities during the summer-ending holiday, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe today joined other state officials in outlining plans to ensure safety on the Commonwealth’s roadways this weekend through the year’s end.
At a Checkpoint Strikeforce news conference held this afternoon in Richmond, McAuliffe and Virginia State Police officials announced markedly stepped-up law enforcement throughout Virginia to counter Labor Day’s historically deadly toll including the participation of nearly 200 local law enforcement agencies along with State Police area offices deploying literally hundreds of anti-drunk driving efforts under the banner of the 16th-annual traffic safety campaign. Read more
RICHMOND – Fatal crash numbers rose during this year’s Fourth of July weekend, and nearly half of the motorists killed in those crashes were not wearing a seat belt. During the four-day statistical counting period, preliminary numbers report a total of nine drivers and passengers died in as many traffic crashes statewide this past holiday weekend. Last year, traffic crashes claimed a total of eight lives on Virginia highways. Read more
On Saturday, several new laws will go into effect in Virginia. One will help more people keep their driver’s license after being charged with marijuana possession. It will allow a judge to opt for additional community service instead of automatically suspending someone’s driver’s license for six months. HB 2051 / SB 1091 impacts adults who were not operating a vehicle at the time of the offense. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – Hundreds of new laws were passed by the 2017 Session Virginia General Assembly that are likely to affect the daily lives of many Virginia citizens. Among the many new laws are several that affect Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control regulations. Soon you’ll be able to buy wine and beer at one of Virginia’s many historic cinema’s, or purchase 151-proof alcohol like Everclear from an ABC store.
These new laws go into effect on Saturday, July 1. Here’s a selection of some of the new ABC laws that stand out: Read more
RICHMOND – With a “record-breaking” number of travelers forecasted for the 2017 Independence Day weekend and the recent rash of fatal crashes in Virginia since the official start of summer, the Virginia State Police is urging all motorists to put traffic safety at the top of their list of holiday priorities. This past weekend, 15 people were killed in traffic crashes across the Commonwealth. Those who lost their lives in traffic crashes June 23-25, 2017, included drivers, passengers, motorcyclists and pedestrians ranging from 4 months to 74 years of age.
To ensure the Fourth of July holiday is as safe as possible, Virginia State Police will increase patrols during the long holiday weekend. Beginning Saturday, July 1, VSP will join law enforcement around the country for Operation CARE (Combined Accident Reduction Effort), a state-sponsored, national program intended to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries due to impaired driving, speed and failing to wear a seat belt. The 2017 July Fourth statistical counting period begins at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, July 1, 2017, and continues through midnight Tuesday, July 4, 2017. Read more
RICHMOND – Virginia’s top transportation safety advocates were honored today during a ceremony at Virginia’s State Capitol. Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian J. Moran and DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb presented the 2017 Governor’s Transportation Safety Awards.
The following individuals and organizations were honored for outstanding contributions to transportation safety... Read more
RICHMOND – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has granted Virginia’s request for additional time to continue work toward REAL ID compliance. As such, Virginians may continue to use their state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards to access secure federal facilities and military bases and to board domestic flights.
Virginia will become fully REAL ID compliant by October 2018 and will begin offering REAL ID approved driver’s licenses and ID cards at that time. These credentials will be optional for Virginians to obtain. Beginning in October 2020, Americans will need to use a federally approved credential – such as the REAL ID credential Virginia is developing – in order to board domestic flights in the United States. Read more
RICHMOND – The 2017 Memorial Day holiday weekend proved safer for those traveling the highways of Virginia in comparison to the 2016 Memorial Day weekend. During the four-day statistical counting period, preliminary numbers report a total of seven drivers and passengers died in six traffic crashes statewide this past holiday weekend. During the same time period in 2016, traffic crashes claimed a total of eight lives on Virginia highways.
The six fatal traffic crashes occurred in the cities of Christiansburg and Norfolk and the counties of Augusta, Bedford, Carroll and Rockingham. Sunday’s fatal crash in Rockingham County claimed the lives of two drivers involved in a head-on collision, both of whom were not wearing seat belts. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – Depending on where you live in Virginia, over the next two days you may only see snow flurries or be counting the inches of snow as it accumulates. Regardless, the Virginia State Police are reminding all Virginians of the need to drive to the conditions. Read more
RICHMOND – The Christmas holiday weekend proved to be a deadly one on Virginia’s highways. During the four-day statistical counting period, which began at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Dec. 23, 2016, through midnight Monday, Dec. 26, 2016, preliminary reports indicate 10 people died in traffic crashes across the Commonwealth.
The 10 fatal crashes occurred in the counties of Albemarle, Alleghany, Buchanan, Culpeper, Fauquier, Louisa, Prince William and Wise; and the cities of Chesapeake and Suffolk. Three of the deceased were pedestrians (Louisa County, Prince William County and the city of Suffolk). The fatal crash in the city of Chesapeake was a hit-and-run that is still under investigation by the Virginia State Police. Four of the drivers and passengers killed in crashes were not wearing seat belts. Read more
RICHMOND – Fortunately, a forecasted record volume of traffic over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend did not yield an increase in traffic deaths across the Commonwealth of Virginia. Preliminary reports indicate a total of seven people were killed in seven traffic crashes statewide, compared to nine deaths during the 2015 Thanksgiving holiday and eight in 2014. Read more
RICHMOND – With the most heavily-traveled holiday just days away, the Virginia State Police are strongly encouraging motorists to make safe driving a priority during the Thanksgiving weekend. Since Saturday (Nov. 12), traffic crashes in Virginia have claimed the lives of 13 drivers and passengers, and three pedestrians. From Jan. 1, 2016, to Nov. 17, 2016, preliminary reports indicate traffic crashes statewide have resulted in 629 deaths; compared to 661 deaths during the same timeframe in 2015. Read more
SALEM, VA— More than seventy high and middle schools across Virginia are kicking off a statewide campaign to increase seat belt usage rates among teens and youth. (See list of schools below)
The four-week challenge, “Save Your Tailgate, Buckle Up” will encourage youth and teens to develop a lifelong buckle up habit by reminding them that seat belts are critical safety equipment for every driver and passenger. Using the slogan, “Seat Belts Are Your Safety Equipment,” the campaign emphasizes that seat belts are critical safety equipment in a vehicle and are designed to protect and save lives. Just as football players always wear a helmet, drivers and passengers should always buckle up for safety is a central message of the campaign. Read more
Though a national safety group warned that Labor Day weekend could be the deadliest in eight years on U.S. highways, Virginia’s number of traffic deaths over the four-day period that started Friday and ended Monday were down by more than half compared to 2015, the state police said.
There were seven reported traffic deaths statewide, compared with 16 in 2015, according to preliminary data. Two motorcyclists died in Chesterfield and Henry counties, a pedestrian was killed in Norfolk and four fatal crashes happened in Brunswick, King George, Montgomery and Nottoway counties. Two fatalities involved people who did not use seat belts, the state police said. All of those killed were males between the ages of 17 and 79. Read more
RICHMOND – Summer is winding down, which mean thousands of motorists will be heading out on highways across the Commonwealth this Labor Day weekend. Travelers can expect to see more stationary and roving patrols by Virginia State Police troopers as part of the Department’s participation in the annual Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (C.A.R.E.) program. Operation CARE is a nationwide, state-sponsored traffic safety program that aims to reduce traffic crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by impaired driving, speeding and failing to use occupant restraints. Virginia State Police’s participation in the program means troopers will increase visibility and traffic enforcement efforts throughout the Commonwealth beginning Friday morning, Sep. 2, 2016 at 12:01 a.m. and continuing through midnight Monday, Sept. 5, 2016. Read more
Norfolk State University Police, along with law enforcement personnel from Christopher Newport University, Hampton University and Tidewater Community College will hold a 10 a.m. press conference on Sept. 2 at the NSU Student Center. The event will occur in advance of the college football and tailgating seasons at many higher education institutions in the Tidewater area. Read more...
More people were killed on county roads last year in crashes where drivers and passengers were not using seat belts than in crashes involving alcohol. And so far this year, the numbers are getting worse.
There were 65 crashes in Augusta County in 2015 involving unrestrained drivers or passengers. In those crashes 61 people were injured and 7 people were killed. Sixty five crashes, sixty-eight injuries or deaths. Read more...
RICHMOND – Five drivers, a motorcyclist, a teenage passenger and a pedestrian died in seven traffic crashes across Virginia over the Fourth of July weekend, according to preliminary reports. The 2016 July Fourth statistical counting period began at 12:01 a.m., Friday, July 1, 2016, and concluded midnight Monday, July 4, 2016. The fatal crashes occurred in the cities of Chesapeake and Roanoke, and the counties of Albemarle, Buckingham, Chesterfield, Lunenburg and Sussex. The double fatality occurred in the City of Chesapeake. Read more...
Reducing motor vehicle crash deaths was one of the great public health achievements of the 20th century for the US. However, more than 32,000 people are killed and 2 million are injured each year from motor vehicle crashes. In 2013, the US crash death rate was more than twice the average of other high-income countries. In the US, front seat belt use was lower than in most other comparison countries. One in 3 crash deaths in the US involved drunk driving, and almost 1 in 3 involved speeding. Lower death rates in other high-income countries and a high percentage of risk factors in the US suggest that we can make more progress in reducing crash deaths. Read more...
RICHMOND – To ensure the Fourth of July holiday is as safe as possible, Virginia State Police will increase patrols during the long holiday weekend. Beginning July 1, VSP will join law enforcement around the country for Operation CARE (Combined Accident Reduction Effort), a state-sponsored, national program intended to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries due to impaired driving, speed and failing to wear a seat belt. The 2016 July Fourth statistical counting period begins at 12:01 a.m., Friday, July 1, 2016, and continues through midnight Monday, July 4, 2016. Read more...
RICHMOND – All Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) customer service centers (CSCs) will be closed on Saturday, July 2 and Monday, July 4 in observance of Independence Day. DMV will re-open for service Tuesday, July 5.
During the Fourth of July holiday weekend, law enforcement officers will be out in full force, cracking down on drivers who are not obeying the law. DMV’s Virginia Highway Safety Office reminds Virginians to designate a sober driver before the Fourth of July celebrations begin. Read more
RICHMOND - Virginia's top transportation safety advocates were honored today during a ceremony at Virginia's Executive Mansion. Governor Terry McAuliffe and DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb presented the 2016 Governor's Transportation Safety Awards
The following individuals and organizations were honored for outstanding contributions to transportation safety... Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – What do summer movie blockbusters and Metro-Richmond emergency responders have in common? Beginning June 3, 2016, through the end of the month, they will be sharing the same silver screen in theatres across the region to help increase awareness of Virginia’s “Move Over” law. The kickoff coincides with Governor McAuliffe’s 2014 designation of June as Virginia’s “Move Over Awareness Month.”
The 30-second special public service announcement (PSA) features members of Hanover County Fire and EMS, Henrico County Police, New Kent County Sheriff’s Office, New Kent County Fire and EMS, VDOT, Virginia State Police and AAA Mid-Atlantic reminding motorists to comply with the state’s Move Over law. The PSA is running in the pre-show before each feature presentation during the entire month of June in theaters in Richmond. Read more
RICHMOND – The 2016 Memorial Day holiday weekend proved safer for those traveling the highways of Virginia in comparison to the 2015 Memorial Day weekend. During the four-day statistical counting period, preliminary numbers report a total of eight drivers and passengers died in seven traffic crashes statewide this past holiday weekend. During the same time period in 2015, traffic crashes claimed a total of 14 lives on Virginia highways. Read more
Five law enforcement agencies in Virginia’s capital launched a public awareness campaign in fall 2015 to communicate the physical, professional and legal effects of underage drinking to college students.
Marketed as “RVA Buzzkill” in Richmond, Va., campaign materials and messages were adapted with permission from the Ohio Drug Free Action Alliance.
RVA Buzzkill united police departments at Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Union University, the University of Richmond and Reynolds Community College. The Richmond Police Department also participated in the campaign. Read more
RICHMOND – The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) urges drivers to drink responsibly and plan ahead this St. Patrick’s Day.
There were 17 alcohol-related crashes on March 17-18, 2015, exactly half the amount from 2014. DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb, the Governor’s Highway Safety Representative, is hopeful this year’s numbers will be even lower. Read more
RICHMOND - The outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to change the behaviors of Virginia's motorists leading to crash, injury and fatality reduction, may be nominated for the 2016 Virginia Governor's Transportation Safety Awards. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ Highway Safety Office is accepting nominations through March 16, 2016 for 13 different transportation safety categories. Read more
RICHMOND – As the first of two forecasted snowstorms makes its way across the Commonwealth Wednesday, Virginians are encouraged to plan ahead, be prepared and avoid unnecessary travel. Virginia State Police will have all available troopers and supervisors working in advance of and the duration of the storms as they make their way across and into the Commonwealth. To prevent unnecessary traffic crashes and delays from occurring on Virginia’s highways during the storms, state police advises residents to postpone travel plans and avoid driving, when possible. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – Five fatal crashes over the Christmas holiday weekend resulted in the deaths of one pedestrian, one moped operator and three drivers on Virginia’s highways. The deaths occurred in Bedford and Surry counties, and the cities of Hampton, Newport News and Richmond. Alcohol was a factor in at least two of the five fatal crashes. As of Dec. 28, 2015, preliminary reports indicate 732 individuals have died in traffic crashes statewide; compared to 694 same date in 2014. Read more
RICHMOND - The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ Highway Safety Office (VAHSO) has scheduled regional workshops to assist nonprofits, state agencies and law enforcement agencies with the 2017 transportation safety grant application submission process.
Beginning February 1, 2016, VAHSO will accept applications for grants to support programs throughout Virginia that strive to reduce traffic deaths and injuries. The deadline for transportation safety grant submissions is February 29, 2016. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – The Virginia State Police is partnering with the state police, highway patrols and local law enforcement of every state along the East Coast containing a portion of Interstate 95 in an effort to keep one of the nation’s major interstate corridors safe and fatality-free. This Drive to Save Lives traffic-safety operation begins Saturday, Dec. 26, 2015, and concludes New Year’s Eve. Read more
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration today announced its nationwide campaign to get drunk drivers off the road this holiday season and unveiled a new Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over ad to run in movie theaters immediately before the hotly anticipated Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which opens nationwide this weekend.
“We hope the millions of Americans who will be on the road over the holidays will make the safe choice not to drink and drive,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Across the country, local law enforcement officers will be on the roads, protecting all of us from the risk of drunk driving.” Read more
RICHMOND – Be a designated, sober driver this holiday season and be part of the Drive to Save Lives campaign. During the final two weeks of 2015, Virginia State Police is joining law enforcement across the country in traffic safety initiatives to deter and stop impaired driving. The weekend before Christmas beginning Friday, Dec. 18, and continuing through Monday, Dec. 21, is designated as the 2015 National Holiday Lifesaver Weekend by Operation C.A.R.E. (Combined Accident Reduction Effort). As part of this safety campaign and to maximize enforcement efforts, Virginia State Police and local law enforcement will focus patrols during time periods when alcohol consumption and holiday parties are most prevalent. Read more
DMV urges Virginians to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” this holiday season – and every day. Law enforcement officers across the country – and Virginia – will be out in full force now through the New Year’s weekend actively searching for drunk drivers as part of the semi-annual crackdown on impaired driving. Read more
CHESTERFIELD CO., Va. — Colonel W. Steven Flaherty joined students at Cosby High School in Chesterfield County Tuesday morning to officially kick off a statewide campaign to encourage teens to “Steer into the New Year” by celebrating responsibly, driving safely, and buckling up throughout the holiday season. In an effort to challenge all students statewide to arrive safely back at school after the holidays, Colonel Flaherty along with the Cosby High Youth of Virginia Speak Out (YOVASO) Chapter were the first to sign the “Steer into the New Year, Drive Responsibly” pledge banner.
The Holiday Safe Driving Campaign, “Steer into the New Year,” is designed to help teenagers make it safely to 2016 by driving responsibly, buckling up, avoiding alcohol and drug use, and limiting distractions. It is sponsored by Youth of Virginia Speak Out (YOVASO), the Virginia State Police, and the DMV, Virginia’s Highway Safety Office. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – With several highly-anticipated films debuting at the cinema this holiday season, Metro-Richmond moviegoers will have the opportunity to also preview an important public safety message concerning Virginia’s “Move Over” law. For the first time ever, 81 local screens will be running a special public service announcement (PSA) featuring members of Hanover County Fire and EMS, Henrico County Police, New Kent County Sheriff’s Office, New Kent County Fire and EMS, VDOT, Virginia State Police and AAA Mid-Atlantic. The 30-second PSA reminds all motorists to comply with the state Move Over law and will run in the pre-show before each feature presentation. Funding is provided through a grant administered by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Highway Safety Office and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Read more
ARLINGTON, Va. -- Shaquille O'Neal today joined the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (Responsibility.org) and the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) to unveil GHSA's new law enforcement initiative to provide states funding to significantly increase the number of officers trained to detect drug-impaired drivers. The event was held at Rayburn House Office Building and was attended by members of Congress and Congressional staff. Read more
RICHMOND – Six individuals lost their lives in traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways over the 2015 Thanksgiving holiday weekend, according to preliminary reports. In 2014, a total of eight people were killed in traffic crashes during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. During the 2015 holiday statistical counting period that began at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday (Nov. 25) and ended at midnight Sunday (Nov. 29), the fatal crashes occurred in Craig, King George and Loudoun counties, and in the cities of Hampton, Newport News and Norfolk. Read more
RICHMOND – Whether you root for the Hokies or the Hoos, or have your own favorite college football team to cheer on during this Saturday’s major matchups, nothing rivals the importance of all fans driving to save lives over the Thanksgiving weekend. In fact, Head Virginia Tech Football Coach Frank Beamer and Head University of Virginia Football Coach Mike London this summer put their rivalries aside in order to team up with the Virginia State Police for a traffic safety public service announcement (PSA): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KrQUzAYYFY. | Read more
RICHMOND – No one would willingly ride a rollercoaster without a safety belt or harness. Yet, only 77 percent of Virginians last year found it necessary to ride in a car, SUV and pickup truck buckled up. The odds of being injured on a rollercoaster are one in 24 million and the chance of being killed is one in 750 million.* No one died on a rollercoaster in Virginia in 2014 or 2015. But, in the first 10 months of this year, 254 adults, teens, and children who were not wearing seat belts have died in traffic crashes.** Another 3,174 persons have been injured in traffic crashes after failing to buckle up. Read more
RICHMOND – November is the most dangerous month for deer-related crashes in Virginia and the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and AAA Mid-Atlantic urge motorists to buckle up, slow down and be observant.
Last year, 1,279 Virginia crashes involving a deer – about one quarter of the deer-related crashes reported for the entire year – occurred during the month of November, according to DMV statistics. One person was killed and another 103 people were injured. Read more
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Despite progress in recent decades, motor vehicle crashes are still the leading cause of death of teens in the U.S. In 2013, nearly 4,000 drivers 15 to 20 years old were involved in fatal crashes(1). And a strong economy means more disposable income that puts more teens at risk on the road - often in older cars without the latest safety features. Preliminary 2015 data(2) suggest that overall traffic fatalities are on the rise. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – This week the Virginia State Police and Youth of Virginia Speak Out (YOVASO) are reminding all Virginians of the necessity of keeping our young drivers and passengers safe on the highways of the Commonwealth. Monday, Oct. 19, 2015, signals the start of two very important traffic safety weeks aimed at protecting teen drivers and those students who ride school buses. Read more
SALEM, VA— Fifty high and middle schools across Virginia are kicking off a statewide campaign to increase seat belt usage rates among teens and youth. (See list of schools below)
The three-week challenge, “Save Your TAIL-Gate, Buckle Up” will encourage youth and teens to develop a lifelong habit of buckling up. It is sponsored by Youth of Virginia Speak Out About Traffic Safety (YOVASO), the Virginia State Police (VSP), and the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles Highway Safety Office. The Allstate Foundation is sponsoring the campaign through a generous grant that is funding educational materials for participating schools. The grant is also funding prizes for the high and middle schools that place in the top three for their programs to encourage seat belt use among students. Read more
Virginia’s 2015 Checkpoint Strikeforce anti-drunk driving campaign gets under way this week with the release of television and radio commercials celebrating the beauty of designated drivers.
The commercials are part of a larger campaign to proactively communicate that nothing is more “beautiful” than a safe ride home after a night of drinking, whether it’s in a cab, public transportation, with a sober friend or through a transportation network company such as Uber or Lyft. Read more
This study finds that about one-quarter of all crashes and 30 percent of injury crashes studied occurred when a police officer's car was stationary.
“Police officers are at risk for getting injured in crashes under all types of driving conditions, not just when they are engaged in emergency driving,” said Tom LaTourrette, author of the study and a senior physical scientist at RAND, a nonprofit research organization. Read more
RICHMOND – Imagine this scenario: there’s a serious car crash involving a family; an infant in a child safety seat has a specific medical condition and needs care, but the other people in the car are unable to communicate.
Virginia’s new Child Safety Seat Emergency Identification Sticker is a tool to aid fire, rescue and law enforcement officers in this situation so they can learn important personal and medical information about a child. Also, if the other vehicle occupants in this scenario need medical care and the infant does not, the sticker lists an emergency contact person for the child. Read more
Richmond’s experiment with red-light cameras has contributed to an 83 percent drop in crashes at one of the city’s worst intersections, generating $97,470 in traffic fines but no net profits to the city because of contractual costs.
Major wrecks at or near the intersection of Elkhardt and Hull Street roads plunged from 18 in 2012, the first full year before the cameras were installed, to nine in 2013 and to just three last year, police said.
“It’s no longer a constant location of accidents,” Richmond Acting Deputy Police Chief Steve Drew said last week. “I believe that camera played a helpful role in reducing those numbers. We did enforcement initiatives around our high-accident locations, but (Elkhardt and Hull streets) had the biggest drop." Read more
RICHMOND – Preliminary reports indicate the 2015 Fourth of July holiday weekend experienced the fewest fatal traffic crashes since 2002. A total of four fatal crashes have been reported for the three-day holiday weekend.
Three drivers and one passenger died in the four crashes that occurred between July 3, 2015, and July 5, 2015, in the counties of Carroll, Henrico, Pittsylvania and Washington. The Washington County fatal crash claimed the life of a 5-year-old Houston, Texas, girl. The girl was not secured in a booster seat at the time of the crash. Read more
Thanks to a gracious donation from Olde Town Bicycles in Ashland, the Ashland Police Department is providing a limited number of free bicycle lights to increase the visibility and safety of people riding bikes at night. Read more
Drive Alive Richmond Teen Driving Study
In recent years, many surveys have been conducted of teenage drivers in order to obtain a better understanding of their distracted driving behaviors and to develop strategies for addressing those behaviors. However, most surveys have been done at a national level. This survey focused on teen drivers living in a specific community – the metropolitan area of Richmond, Virginia.
In this study, we conducted an online survey in March 2015 of high school students from within the Richmond community. A total of 238 teens participated in the study. However, 15 teens were excluded from our analysis of the survey results because they reported that they had not yet started driving. Read more
RICHMOND – Several new traffic laws take effect July 1 in Virginia. The 2015 General Assembly amended state code to increase safety provisions for traffic management vehicles, bicyclists, postal vehicles, and refuse-collection vehicles, among other initiatives. Read more
RICHMOND – Drivers for Uber and Lyft, called transportation network company (TNC) partners, have until July 1 to register personal vehicles with the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to continue uninterrupted operation after the state’s new TNC law takes effect.
There is no cost to register a partner vehicle. TNC partners are encouraged to check with the TNC for which they operate to determine if it initiates DMV registration on their behalf. If so, the TNC registration credentials will be mailed to the vehicle owner on file with DMV. Read more
RICHMOND – Virginia Secretary of Public Safety Brian J. Moran saluted the winners of the 2015 Governor’s Transportation Safety Awards during a ceremony at the Capitol on Tuesday, June 16.
“These awards recognize the hard work, cooperation, and innovation that are hallmarks of Virginia’s safety organizations, law enforcement, and individuals looking to make a difference,” Secretary Moran said. “But the real reward can be measured in lives saved. Traffic fatalities have been on the decline for years in Virginia, thanks to all of you.” Read more
RICHMOND - Virginia law, effective July 1, 2015, regulates transportation network companies, more commonly called TNCs.
These companies – Uber and Lyft – use a smart phone app to match passengers with nearby drivers through GPS technology. TNC drivers, called partners, operate their personal vehicles. Ride arrangement and payment is all done through the app. Street hails are prohibited.
Although the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles oversees TNC regulations, DMV special agents and local and state law enforcement share the duty of enforcing the new law. Read more
RICHMOND – During this year’s national Click It or Ticket mobilization in May, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ (DMV) Highway Safety Office wants motorists to ask themselves one question: Why should I always wear a seat belt? Read more
If every new car made in the United States had a built-in blood alcohol level tester that prevented impaired drivers from driving the vehicle, how many lives could be saved, injuries prevented, and injury-related dollars left unspent?
Researchers at the University of Michigan Injury Center and the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute studied the impact of installing these alcohol ignition interlock devices in all newly purchased vehicles over a 15-year period; their estimates of injury prevention and cost savings are significant. Read more
During National Work Zone Awareness Week, observed this year through Friday, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) joins the highway contracting community and federal, state and local transportation officials to educate motorists about the potential dangers we all face while driving through work zones.
This year’s national theme – “Expect the Unexpected” – emphasizes the changing conditions that occur during the busy roadway construction season. Read more
There have been fewer crashes - from fender-benders to frequently fatal T-bone collisions - at intersections monitored by red-light cameras than there were before the cameras were installed, a five-year city study of the program shows. Read more
If 18-year-olds can enter into contracts, vote, serve on juries and fight our wars, we've already made the decision that they should be treated like adults. That should include allowing them to drink. Legally and responsibly. Because of existing laws, many are drinking illegally and irresponsibly. Read more
Delaware is among several US states -- including the bellwether of California -- considering digital driver's licenses, and prototypes will go into pilot tests in some places this year. If those tests go well, the first smattering of virtual licenses could be offered to the public as early as 2016.
The digital version would resemble your printed license, with the same information, including your name, address and date of birth, along with a photo. And just as your printed license contains a scannable barcode so machines can read the information, so too would the digital version. Read more
The shift to the “21 or over” drinking age was led in the Eighties by the Federal government, who tied Federal highway funds to mandatory changes in state law. (Talk about coercion!). Virginia, like every other state, had no other choice but to fall in line. While the Federal effort had the laudable purpose of reducing DWI violations, it created the absurdity that college-age young people could not legally drink any form of alcohol. Read more
RICHMOND – With three days left until St. Patrick’s Day, the clock is ticking to find a designated driver because choosing one isn’t being lucky, but smart. If you are one of the many celebrating at a festival, street party or attending a parade this weekend or March 17, remember Virginia State Police will be on patrol looking for individuals who fail to make the responsible choice and choose to drink and drive. Read more
The Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety provides support for implementation of evidence-based road safety interventions in 10 cities around the world. Those interventions require police enforcement of road safety laws such as helmet and seat-belt wearing, drinking and driving, and speed reduction. Enforcing these road safety laws, which are proven to save lives, are relatively commonplace in the United States. In many low- and middle-income cities, however, a “culture of safety” is not prioritized. Read more
RICHMOND – Today Governor McAuliffe signed SB1025 and HB1662, which established licensing procedures for transportation network companies (TNC’s) like Uber and Lyft to legally operate in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Earlier this year, Governor McAuliffe and Attorney General Herring’s offices worked with the Department of Motor Vehicles and TNC companies to find a compromise that allowed these entities to temporarily operate in Virginia until the General Assembly passed permanent legislation. Read more
RICHMOND (February 16, 2015) -- Today, the Senate unanimously passed a bill from Attorney General Mark R. Herring and Delegate Alfonso Lopez (49-Arlington) to ban the importation, sale, and use of powdered or crystalline alcohol. The bill was previously approved unanimously by the House of Delegates and it will now go to Governor Terry McAuliffe for his signature. The use of powdered alcohol presents a substantial risk for abuse, especially by young people, because it can be easily transported, hidden or consumed due to its discrete, compact packaging. It could be sprinkled into to someone's drink without their knowledge, snorted through the nose potentially leading to brain damage, and could easily be over-consumed resulting in alcohol poisoning. Powdered alcohol is currently banned in seven states, with several other state legislatures considering similar measures, even as the manufacturer pushes to get the product to market this spring. Read more
RICHMOND - The outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to change the behaviors of Virginia's motorists leading to crash, injury and fatality reduction may be nominated for the 2015 Virginia Governor's Transportation Safety Awards. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles' Highway Safety Office is accepting nominations through March 6, 2015 for 13 different transportation safety categories.
Entries will be judged on creativity, imagination, uniqueness, the impact on the community, and the use of volunteers and private sector resources. Individuals, organizations, businesses or government agencies are eligible for these awards based on transportation safety activities and programs that took place during 2014. Read more...
RICHMOND - The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ Highway Safety Office (VAHSO) is accepting applications for grants to support programs throughout Virginia that strive to reduce traffic deaths and injuries. The deadline for transportation safety grant submissions is February 28, 2015.
The funding period for approved applications is October 1, 2015 through September 30, 2016. Applicants selected for the program participate on a cost-reimbursement basis. Read more...
WASHINGTON – The nation’s decades-long campaign to combat drunk driving continues to make our roads safer, but use of marijuana and prescription drugs is increasingly prominent on the highways, creating new safety questions, according to a pair of ground-breaking studies released today by the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
One study, the latest version of NHTSA’s Roadside Survey of Alcohol and Drug Use by Drivers, found that the number of drivers with alcohol in their system has declined by nearly one-third since 2007, and by more than three-quarters since the first Roadside Survey in 1973. But that same survey found a large increase in the number of drivers using marijuana or other illegal drugs. In the 2014 survey, nearly one in four drivers tested positive for at least one drug that could affect safety. Read more
Loudoun County, VA- The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office and the Virginia State Police are joining efforts in a campaign to curb aggressive and impaired driving in the area of Route 15 and Route 50 in Loudoun County.
The campaign is to address safety concerns in this corridor for motorists using Route 15 and Route 50. In recent years the corridor has been impacted by serious crashes from drivers following too close, as well as distracted and impaired drivers. Read more
The Virginia State Police is reminding drivers that leaving the scene of an accident that involves injury, death or damage to property is a crime. Police say five pedestrians and one bicyclist have been struck and killed in eight hit-and-run crashes across Virginia. Read more
RICHMOND – This holiday season, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ (DMV) Highway Safety Office is reminding motorists to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.” Law enforcement officers across the country – and Virginia – will be out in full force now through January 1 actively searching for drunk drivers.
RICHMOND – Despite the challenging weather at the start of the 2014 Thanksgiving weekend in Virginia, preliminary numbers indicate a record decline in traffic fatalities over the holiday statistical counting period. From 12:01 a.m., Wednesday (Nov. 26, 2014), through midnight Sunday (Nov. 30, 2014), five fatal crashes have been reported statewide. During the 2013 five-day period, traffic crashes claimed a total of 12 lives. 1992 was the last time Virginia had only five traffic deaths during the Thanksgiving weekend.* Read more
The November Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization begins in Virginia on Friday, Nov. 21 and continues through the Thanksgiving holiday. Law enforcement will be enforcing all traffic laws, with a special emphasis on seat belt and child safety seat laws. During last year’s five-day Thanksgiving holiday period, there were 11 fatalities, and eight of them were unrestrained. Plus, alcohol was a factor in at least four of the fatal crashes. This annual November Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization is designed to prevent needless tragedies on our roadways, and to make sure motorists and passengers know that officers will be diligently patrolling Virginia’s roadways. Read more
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles is making it easier for qualified disabled citizens to obtain the required certification to drive commercial motor vehicles (CMV). DMV is now issuing Skill Performance Evaluation (SPE) certificates previously only issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Read more
Richmond, VA – Following last year’s increase in drunk driving fatalities – the first rise in six years – Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe unveiled a powerful new tool to keep drunk drivers off of the Commonwealth’s roadways: TheVirginia Faces of Drunk Driving website. The governor dedicated the Tumblr site to those taken by drunk driving, as well as survivors and led a remembrance of their lives with Virginia’s top law enforcement and highway safety officials.Read more
RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) - Shocking new numbers show more teens that are dying in car crashes are not wearing their seat belts. That's according to a new report released by the Governors Highway Safety Association. According to the report, there was a six percent increase in the number of fatal accidents involving teens who were not wearing their seat belts between 2009 and 2012. Janet Brooking from Drive Smart Virginia says education is the key to getting more teens to buckle up when they get into a car. Read more
DUI fatalities in Virginia have dropped by 21 percent since 2005, according to Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles statistics. Crashes related to drinking and driving have fallen about 30 percent. Convictions for the offense have stayed relatively steady. Read more
RICHMOND – As this weekend approaches, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is urging caution after seven motorcyclists have died on Virginia’s roads over the past two weekends—four over the Fourth of July holiday and three the weekend of June 28. Read more
RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -So far, Virginia's convicted 1427 people of texting while driving, that's double what we saw 6 months ago. The law just celebrated one year on the books in the Commonwealth. NBC12 requested statistics from the Department of Motor Vehicles. The agency only has 10 months of data right now and won't have the entire picture until September. Northern Virginia localities had the most convictions: Fairfax County with 318, Prince William County with 130. They were followed by Virginia Beach with 126 convictions. Read more
Like rotten children, some of Hampton Roads' most accident-prone intersections and freeways are behaving far worse than they should. Researchers have crunched the data and come up with another way to look at those harrowing spots. A new analysis by the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization quantified the potential for reducing accidents at hundreds of locations and offered possible fixes for the highest-ranking intersections and freeways. Read more...
MIDDLETOWN -- Speeding fines in counties and cities could increase by up to $5, after a bill signed into law by Gov. Terry McAuliffe this spring allows jurisdictions to tack on an extra fee to fund electronic summons systems. Middletown Police Chief Phil Breeden presented the ordinance, Section 17.1-279.1, to Town Council during its work session on Monday. Read more...
RICHMOND – Preliminary numbers indicate that eight individuals died in eight crashes during the 2014 Fourth of July holiday weekend. In 2013, seven people were killed in traffic crashes over a four-day holiday weekend.* The holiday statistical counting period began at 12:01 a.m. Friday, July 4, 2014, and concluded at midnight Sunday, July 6, 2014. Read more
The Saved by the Belt Awards Committee recently selected fourteen individuals — including two law enforcement officers — to receive the Virginia Saved by the Belt Award.The awards were presented between April and June 2014. Click here to read their stories
RICHMOND, Va. - The Virginia Trucking Association is urging the more than 1 million Virginians that AAA projects will travel by automobile during the July 4th holiday to practice cuation and patience to ensure our roads are safe.
Nationwide, AAA expects about 41 million Americans to travel at least 50 miles or more. That's up about 2% from the 40.3 million who traveled during last year's Independence Day weekend. About 85% will take their trips by car.
Additional motorists and road conditions can lead to dangerous situations, so a team of elite professional truck drivers are offering advice on how to navigate through highway traffic and arrive at your destination safely. Members of America's Road Team - an elite group of professional truck drivers - with more than 470 years collective driving experience and 30 million-plus accident-free miles, have several safety tips for motorists traveling the highways this holiday. Read more
RICHMOND – While summer is a fun time for students to enjoy the freedom of being out of school, parents and teens should be aware of a number of youth-specific dangers, including traffic fatalities and underage drinking. Teenagers have a greater chance of dying in cars during the summer than any other time throughout the year. Read more
RICHMOND – Virginia’s roads should be safer for bicyclists across Virginia beginning July 1. That’s when a new law requiring motorists to pass bicyclists by three feet goes into effect. Virginia law currently requires a motorist to pass a bicyclist by two feet. The Commonwealth is the twenty-first state to pass a three foot law. Pennsylvania requires four feet. Read more
RICHMOND – House of Delegates Committee on Transportation Chairman Tom Rust presented awards to the winners of the 2014 Governor's Transportation Safety Awards during a ceremony at the Capitol on Thursday, June 12, 2014. “Our Commonwealth is committed to developing and implementing traffic safety strategies that save lives,” said Delegate Rust. “I was delighted to be a part of honoring the men and women who devote their time to making Virginia’s roads safer every day.” Read more
RICHMOND – Whether you are hailing a cab back to your hotel after a day of walking in historic Old Town Alexandria, chartering a bus to take a large crew to Busch Gardens or Kings Dominion for the day, arranging transportation home after a night out on the town, or hiring a limo for a luxury ride to a late-spring or summer wedding, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) urges Virginians to consider safety and security when using a for-hire transportation service. Read more
RICHMOND – Beginning in 2014, and for each subsequent year in the Commonwealth, the month of June is now designated as "Move Over Awareness Month." The recognition comes following Senate Joint Resolution (SJR) 102 during the 2014 Virginia General Assembly Session. The declaration is intended to provide further support to Virginia's public safety campaign aimed at increasing drivers' awareness concerning the protection of public safety professionals and highway safety workers, to include safety service patrols on Virginia's roads. Read more
RICHMOND – Virginians are encouraged to get out their cell phone cameras, snap a self-portrait of them buckled up while parked and share it on social media sites using the hashtag #SafetySelfieVA. Virginia DMV will search for and post these buckled-up selfies daily on its new Instagram page. Read more...
Vienna, Va. – To help parents coach teens in developing the skills to be safe drivers, the Network of Employers for Traffic Safety (NETS) and Liberty Mutual Insurance have joined forces to release an electronic edition of The Novice Driver's Road Map: An 8-Step Guide for Parents® (eNDRM). The new guide is available now as a free download from the NETS website.
The eNDRM provides an easy-to-follow curriculum for parents or adult coaches to guide teens in the practice needed to become safe, focused drivers and licensed in nearly all states. The interactive electronic guide is built around a series of eight drives that increase in complexity. Each includes a checklist of practice skills along with a set of detailed instructions and space to add notes. The practice sessions progress from driving in an empty parking lot to driving at night and in inclement weather. A log is included to track practice hours that updates with the time accrued after each entry, a useful tool to assist with graduated driver licensing requirements. Read more...
In recognition that April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, the Fairfax County Police Department held it’s first-ever distracted driver training session for FCPD officers. This goal of the training was to increase internal officer awareness on the reality of the dangers of distracted driving and underscore the importance of enforcement in this area. The class focus included: legal challenges, psychology, enforcement and current trends of distracted driving. Read more...
NEW ORLEANS, La. –Today, Virginia State Police Superintendent, Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, joined state police and highway patrol leaders from 40 other states along with the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to announce the Drive to Save Lives Campaign at a press conference in New Orleans, La. Read more...
RICHMOND – Everyone wants to be Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, but not everyone designates a sober driver. Whether you are celebrating the green, white, and orange March 17th or this weekend, be smart and safe about it. If you drive – only drive sober. Read more...
RICHMOND - The outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to change the behaviors of Virginia's motorists leading to crash, injury and fatality reduction, may be nominated for the 2014 Virginia Governor's Transportation Safety Awards. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles' Highway Safety Office is accepting nominations through March 12, 2014 for 13 different transportation safety categories. Read more...
The grants are aimed at reducing traffic deaths and injuries, including programs that increase seat belt use, deter drunken driving and speeding and distracted driving, and promote motorcycle, pedestrian, bicycle, teen and senior driver safety. The deadline for the applications is February 28. Interested applicants must attend a workshop and apply online at www.dmvnow.com.
RICHMOND — Virginia localities that use cameras to detect and fine red-light violators can keep using them, a House of Delegates committee decided Tuesday. The House Transportation Committee voted 13-6 to reject a bill from Del. Ben Cline, R-Rockbridge County, that would have banned the cameras statewide. Nearly 20 uniformed police officers from camera-using cities watched the bill go down. Read more...
RICHMOND, Va. – What displays the colors blue and gray, sticks to the back of your vehicle and intends to remind drivers of a decade-long law to protect first responders and highway safety workers? If you guessed Virginia’s “Move Over” bumper decal, you are right. With $3,500 in funding provided by the Virginia State Police Association (VSPA), the sticker underwent a recent transformation and emerged with a fresh, new look in the continual efforts to promote this life-saving law. Read more...
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia had recorded 725 convictions during the first six months of a texting-while-driving law, which made the distracted-driving practice a primary offense. The preliminary numbers from the Department of Motor Vehicles cover a period from July 1 through the end 2013. They show that the majority of the convictions occurred in heavily traveled northern Virginia and the sprawling, densely populated Hampton Roads area, but virtually every county recorded at least one conviction. Read more...
RICHMOND – In the first six months since Virginia’s texting-while-driving ban became a primary offense, Virginia State Police troopers have issued hundreds of citations for the violation. From July 1, 2013, through December 31, 2013, troopers stopped and charged 567 drivers for violating the state’s “texting- while-driving” law. Read more...
Bruce Smith could have played it safe and said no. But when Anheuser-Busch officials asked him to do a public service announcement discouraging drunken driving during the Super Bowl, the Norfolk native quickly said yes, even if doing so might dredge up unhappy memories.
Smith, the former Booker T. Washington and Virginia Tech football star who holds the NFL record for career sacks, has agreed to do the ads that began running Wednesday on the Bud Light website and on YouTube. Although the ads won't run on commercial television, they are expected to generate a buzz on social media because they are the first the world's largest brewer has produced featuring someone convicted of driving under the influence. Read more...
NEW KENT – The New Kent Sheriff's Office has been nationally recognized for its traffic safety programs. The sheriff's office was recently rewarded first place in the Virginia Law Enforcement Challenge and the National Law Enforcement Challenge, which judges similarly sized agencies. Dana Schrad, Executive Director of Virginia Chiefs of Police presented the sheriff's office with their awards on Jan. 13. According to Schrad, the sheriff's office's deputies are all trained in occupant protection, impaired driving, and speed, as well as "make an exemplary effort with their public information and education activities, as well as their enforcement measures." Read more / Watch video...
Half Of Police Officers Don't Wear Seat Belts, Study Says
While 86 percent of Americans now wear seat belts, an upcoming study that will be published by California's Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training estimates that roughly half of law enforcement officers don't wear them. With traffic-related fatalities the leading cause of death of officers on duty, departments nationwide are buckling down to get officers to buckle up. Read more...
RICHMOND – Starting January 1, 2014, customers who operate Virginia-registered vehicles for only part of the year may temporarily deactivate their license plates and cancel the insurance without having to surrender the plates to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). This new law will be beneficial for owners of seasonal vehicles such as motorcycles and RVs and active duty members of the military on deployment, if the vehicle is not being used. Read more
Preliminary reports confirm traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways claimed 11 lives during the statistical counting period for the 2013 Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Of those 11 killed, eight were not wearing seat belts. Alcohol was a factor in at least four of the fatal traffic crashes. Read more
PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) - When you get behind the wheel, chances are at some point, a driver in front of you, behind you, or right beside you will be distracted. There’s a good chance that person will be texting. Virginia's new texting law is aimed to protect you, but 10 On Your Side learned it has flaws. READ MORE
RICHMOND, VA (Monday, November 4, 2013) – More than one in four motorists (28 percent) reported being so tired they had a hard time keeping their eyes open while driving in the past month, according to new research by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Motorists ages 19-24 were the most likely to report driving dangerously drowsy at 33 percent, while the oldest drivers (ages 75+) and the youngest (ages 16-18) were the least likely to report having done so in the previous month at 22 percent each. READ MORE
Laws restricting aging drivers are sparse, though. In Virginia, the only regulation governing them is that, beginning at age 80, they must pass a vision test when they renew their license - once every eight years. Younger drivers are tested every 16 years.Read more
Virginia State Police say they have cited more than 300 motorists statewide for texting while driving during the first three months of a new Virginia law that makes it a primary rather than a secondary traffic offense. But Tuesday’s announcement comes as state officials are still struggling with how to interpret the finer points of the law and putting into place standardized training for state and local police officers on how to enforce it. Read more
TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - October 01, 2013) - High school students across Canada were out in force at busy intersections this morning, to see if legislation to deter distracted driving is working. Students in 10 Canadian cities observed 2,866 distracted drivers in a one hour period, suggesting that many drivers are not taking the dangers of this behaviour seriously. Added to the 1,091 distractions spotted by Allstate Canada Agents in six other cities, a total of 3,957 distracted drivers were logged in just one hour this morning. Read more
Richmond, VA – Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell joined Virginia State Police, local law enforcement and highway safety leaders today in a demonstration of exactly what goes into identifying and apprehending drunk drivers in the Commonwealth as part of the launch of Virginia’s 2013 Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign. Officers put volunteers through the paces of such enforcement elements as a standard field sobriety test, a preliminary breath test and more to showcase the techniques responsible for helping reduce Virginia’s alcohol-related fatality numbers year after year. Read more
RICHMOND, Va. – Nationwide Insurance and the Virginia State Police have joined together to promote Virginia’s Move Over law that protects the Commonwealth’s public safety personnel and all those who drive tow trucks and road maintenance vehicles.
Since 2003, 138 on-duty law enforcement officers have been struck and killed on the nation’s highways. This is the fourth leading cause of death for a law enforcement officer. *
“Nationwide is pleased to support Virginia State Police, the Protect Those Who Protect Youcampaign and stress the importance of Virginia’s Move Over Law,” said Orysia Meyers, Mid-Atlantic regional vice president, Nationwide Insurance. “Our agents and associates across the state will distribute these materials as part of this valuable information campaign.” Read more
RICHMOND – Preliminary numbers indicate that nine individuals died in nine crashes during the 2013 holiday weekend. In 2012, six people were killed in traffic crashes over a four-day holiday weekend.* Despite the slight increase in deaths from the previous Labor Day holiday, traffic fatalities are still lower overall in Virginia. According to preliminary numbers, as of Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013, 458 lives have been lost to traffic crashes in the Commonwealth compared to 514 on the same date in 2012. Read more
A warning isn’t just a warning anymore for Roanoke County drivers. While a motorist escaping a traffic stop without a ticket may still breathe a sigh of relief, the violation doesn’t simply vanish in Roanoke County. Since April, Roanoke County police have been issuing and documenting written warnings. Read more...
Nearly 200 teenagers steered, spun and crashed in driving simulators Thursday at Lynchburg College to learn about traffic safety.
They have been at the college since Tuesday for the 2013 summer leadership retreat sponsored by Youth of Virginia Speak Out About Traffic Safety program, or YOVASO. Read more...
RICHMOND – Of the seven fatal crashes to occur over the Fourth of July holiday weekend, three claimed the lives of motorcyclists. The three motorcycle crashes occurred in Fauquier County, Prince William County and the City of Hampton. The remaining four fatal crashes occurred in Amelia, Brunswick, Carroll and Warren counties. A total of seven people were killed in the crashes, down from 10 traffic deaths during the 2012 Independence Day holiday weekend. Read more...
Beginning July 1, 2013, Virginia law requires every moped driver to carry a government-issued photo ID (does not have to be a driver’s license but ideally will show name, address and date of birth) and every driver and passenger must wear a helmet while riding a moped. Drivers must also wear a face shield, safety glasses or goggles unless the moped has a windshield. Read more...
RICHMOND – Food, fireworks, family and friends are associated with the Independence Day holiday, unfortunately, so is a spike in traffic fatalities from impaired driving. During the 2011 July 4th holiday, 38 percent of the fatal crashes on the nation’s roads involved a driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 grams per deciliter or higher.* In Virginia last year, 10 percent of the crashes during the July 4th holiday were alcohol-related.**
In an effort to reduce the dangers of drinking and driving, Virginia State Police will step up patrols and enforcement as part of Operation C.A.R.E. The annual, nationwide, state-sponsored program, otherwise known as Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort, concentrates on safe driving through strict traffic enforcement in an attempt to reduce traffic injuries and fatalities. The 2013 statistical counting period for the holiday weekend begins at 12:01 a.m. Thursday, July 4, 2013, and concludes at midnight Sunday, July 7, 2013. Read more...
On Wednesday June 19, 2013, the Danville Police Department held its Annual Traffic Safety Awards Ceremony. A total of 11 officers, 3 citizens, and 3 media outlets were recognized for their efforts in promoting traffic safety during 2012. Additionally 1 citizen was recognized for the proper use of both seat belts and airbags during a traffic crash, the use of which most likely reduced more serious injury or even death.
Danville Police Chief Philip Broadfoot said efforts to increase traffic patrols have led to decreased car accidents and increased arrests that have helped lower the city’s violent crime rate. Read more...
RICHMOND – House Transportation Committee Chairman Joe May presented awards to the winners of the 2013 Governor's Transportation Safety Awards during a ceremony at the Capitol on Thursday, June 20, 2013. The following individuals and organizations were honored for their outstanding contributions to transportation safety. Read more...
DMV has revised the orange placard receipt issued to customers when DMV processes an application for a disabled parking placard. Since the actual disabled parking placard is mailed to the customer, the orange placard receipt is issued to customers who have been authorized to have temporary or permanent disabled parking privileges. They hang the placard receipt from their rearview mirror in their vehicle when parking in spaces designated for the disabled and while waiting to receive their disabled parking placard by mail. Read more...
Richmond, VA – The Virginia Coalition for Distraction Free Driving is pleased to announce an impressive list of nationally and internationally known experts who are scheduled to present the latest distracted driving research at the Virginia Distracted Driving Summit in Richmond, Virginia on Sept. 19. The speakers include leading researchers, business executives, law enforcement, legislators and federal government leaders. Read more...
Six state police and highway patrol agencies spent Friday, June 7, 2013, through Sunday, June 9, 2013, enforcing Operation Border to Border along approximately 791 miles of U.S. Route 15 in an effort to prevent traffic crashes along the heavily-traveled corridor. This coordinated traffic safety enforcement initiative resulted in 1,855 total summonses and arrests among the six states. No traffic fatalities occurred during the three-day project. Read more...
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 3,300 lives could be saved each year if people had worn their seat belts. It's why law enforcement agencies across the country participate in the "Click It or Ticket" campaign -- including Roanoke County.
The agency just wrapped up its most recent enforcement period which ran from May 20 - June 2. During that two-week span, they increased patrols, ran checkpoints, and targeted specific areas with heavy traffic. They also ran a public education campaign to raise awareness about the importance of seatbelts and the dire consequences for not wearing one. Read more...
PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY, Va. — Police issued 1,522 traffic summonses during this year’s “Click It or Ticket” seatbelt enforcement campaign, which ran May 20th to June 2nd. The largest numbers of tickets in any given category were issued for speeding, followed by reckless driving and seatbelt violations. Read more...
Virginia State Police and five other state police and highway patrol agencies this weekend will engage in Operation Border to Border, a coordinated traffic safety enforcement initiative targeting approximately 791 miles of U.S. Route 15, which originates in Waterboro, S.C., and ends in Corning, N.Y. The corridor is a heavily-traveled thoroughfare for summer vacationers and for those attempting to avoid congested interstates serving all six states. Read more...
RICHMOND – New laws taking effect July 1, 2013 take a tougher stance on drinking and driving and driving while distracted. Under current law, a conviction of driving while intoxicated (DWI) is not considered a felony unless it is the third DWI conviction within 10 years. Effective July 1, any DWI conviction will be a felony if a person has a prior conviction of any of the following... Read more
According to preliminary reports, Virginia experienced its first significant decline in Memorial Day weekend traffic deaths in several years. Not since 2009, have fatalities been in the single-digits for the four-day statistical counting period for the holiday weekend. From 12:01 a.m. Friday (May 24, 2013) through midnight Monday (May 27, 2013), preliminary numbers indicate seven people lost their lives in traffic deaths on Virginia’s highways. Read more...
New Kent County, Virginia – DRIVE SMART Virginia and the New Kent County Sheriff’s Office have just completed phase two of Phone Down. Just Drive an education and enforcement project geared toward reducing the number of distracted truck and bus drivers on Interstate 64 in New Kent County, VA. Preliminary results show fewer than 5% of truck drivers are using a hand held phone while driving. Read more...
Glen Allen High School students will receive a day with the UNITE International Texting Simulator on May 21, after a group of students from the school won the 2013 “Arrive Alive PSA Contest,” sponsored by Youth of Virginia Speak Out About Traffic Safety (YOVASO), UNITE International, and the Virginia State Police Association (VSPA). Read more...
Lynchburg, VA – Police from all over Central Virginia come together for a traffic safety checkpoint.
The checkpoint Thursday afternoon at the Monacan Bridge kicked off the annual Click it or Ticket campaign. Law enforcement officers from Lynchburg, Campbell County, Amherst County, Bedford County, Bedford City, and State Police participated. The event is sponsored by the Central Virginia Highway Traffic Safety Board.
Nearly 650 cars passed through during the two hours of the checkpoint. Twelve tickets were written; eight for overdue inspections, one for an expired registration, one for defective equipment, and two were written to people driving without a license.
People were given warnings if they were not wearing their seatbelts. When the enforcement phase of the campaign begins next week, you will get a ticket if you are pulled over and aren't buckled up. WATCH VIDEO
WASHINGTON, D.C.—In a new report released today, the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is projecting that motorcyclist deaths increased approximately 9 percent in 2012, to more than 5,000 lives lost. This is greater than the overall traffic fatality increase projected by the federal government and would be the 14th out of the last 15 years in which motorcyclist deaths increased. Notably, this level of deaths closes in on an all-time high, and motorcyclists remain one of the few roadway user groups where no progress can be shown over the last decade. Read more
April 22, 2013 Fairfax Co. Police Send a Reminder: 50 MEANS 50 The Traffic Division of the Fairfax Co. PD will launch their weeklong initiative “50 Means 50” as they saturate the Fairfax County Parkway this week. The annual campaign kicked off on Sunday, April 21, and targets aggressive and reckless driving, speeding, texting while driving, following too closely, and failure to pay full time and attention on the Fairfax County Parkway. Read more
April 11, 2013 Instructions for Looking Up Special License Plates Recently, there have been some questions about how to make a VCIN inquiry on special license plates. Although you generally enter license plate numbers as the numbers appear on the license plate of passenger cars, not all license plates can be queried this way. Read more
April 1, 2013 Campaign targets distracted truck drivers in New Kent County NEW KENT — Truck and bus drivers be warned: you had better think twice if you are holding your cell phone while driving in New Kent, Virginia. DRIVE SMART Virginia, in partnership with the New Kent County Sheriff's Office and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), will be conducting a distracted driving education and enforcement campaign this spring. Beginning April 8, truck and bus drivers traveling along Interstate 64 in New Kent County will come across a serious message: Phone Down. Just Drive. Read more
March 29, 2013 Rural motorists in Virginia found to lag in seat belt usage RICHMOND-Motor vehicle drivers and passengers in rural Virginia are less likely to wear seat belts than those in other parts of the state, according to a statewide survey. They also are at greater risk of dying in traffic accidents, according to an analysis of state data by The Roanoke Times. Read more
Man convicted of driving 95 mph with six kids while high on heroin HOPEWELL — When Hopewell sheriff’s Deputy Sean Godwin stopped Isaiah Hall last spring for speeding 95 mph on Interstate 295, he was surprised to see six children and another adult packed inside Hall’s van — none of them wearing safety belts or restrained in child seats.
The youngsters, as it turned out, were Hall’s grandchildren, ages 4, 6, 9, 12, 13 and 15. The family, which included Hall’s adult daughter, was returning to East Orange, N.J., after attending a funeral in North Carolina.
“No one had on a seat belt and there were two children who should have had been restrained in booster seats by Virginia law,” said Hopewell prosecutor Elisabeth Custalow. Read more
In an effort to save the lives and preserve the health of our children, Chief Douglas A. Middleton, Commonwealth’s Attorney Shannon Taylor and Dr. Pat Russo, Superintendent of Schools, have agreed to follow a zero tolerance policy for underage drinking. As a result, the Henrico County Police Division will take a zero tolerance approach to its underage drinking enforcement efforts. Read more
February 24-26, 2013
Making It Click – A Roanoke Times Special Report Nearly 82 percent in Virginia, on average, buckle up. But the message isn’t getting through to everyone, especially in rural Virginia, where in some communities up to three-fourths of traffic fatalities involved unbelted drivers or passengers.
The Roanoke Times/roanoke.com in a special report has explored why the disparities exist. They also retrace failed efforts to strengthen Virginia’s seat belt law and look at new initiatives to educate young drivers. Read more
"The governor will review this legislation when we receive it," said McDonnell spokesman J. Tucker Martin. "However, he does continue to have concerns about beginning to list more specific activities that are prohibited while driving." Read more
RICHMOND - The General Assembly has a message for drivers: Keep your hands on the wheel and off your smartphone's keyboard That was again conveyed Friday when a Senate committee advanced compromise legislation to make fines for texting while driving more expensive and allow police to stop a driver for the offense. Safe driving advocates maintain that texting while driving is one of the more dangerous forms of distracted driving.
A spokesman for the governor said McDonnell will review the legislation when he receives it, noting he has some misgivings about the concept. Read more
RICHMOND - The outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to change the behaviors of Virginia’s motorists leading to crash, injury and fatality reduction, may be nominated for the 2013 Virginia Governor’s Transportation Safety Awards. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ Highway Safety Office is accepting nominations through March 15, 2013 for 13 different transportation safety categories. Read more
February 11, 2013 Deadly wrecks in Central Virginia put focus on need to buckle up Last year, car wrecks left empty desks at schools throughout the region. Hardest hit was Bedford County, where 21 people died. ... From 2008 to 2012 in Virginia, more people died in wrecks in which they weren’t wearing a seat belt than died in crashes involving alcohol or speeding. During those five years, 1,623 unrestrained drivers and passengers died in the commonwealth. Read more
November 20, 2012 Slow Down This Thanksgiving Holiday and Save Lives
VDOT Installs Additional “Move Over” Signs Across the State RICHMOND – As the volume of traffic increases on Virginia’s highways for the Thanksgiving weekend, so will the number of Virginia State Police troopers on the road. State police will enhance its visibility and traffic enforcement efforts as part of Operation C.A.R.E. (Combined Accident Reduction Effort). The program is intended to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by speeding, impaired driving and failure to use occupant restraints. Extra patrols willincrease throughout the Commonwealth beginning Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012, at 12:01 a.m. through midnight, Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012. Read more
In 2007, the number of people who died on Virginia roads surpassed 1,000 for the first time in nearly two decades. That grim toll marked a turning point. Traffic fatalities statewide have exceeded 800 only one year since. Safety advocates point to a multitude of changes and trends in explaining the drop. Among them: stricter licensing for young drivers, anti-DUI laws, educational and law enforcement campaigns, increased seat belt use, safer roads and better vehicles. Read more
RICHMOND – Expect to see an increase of Virginia State Police troopers along every interstate in the Commonwealth on Saturday, September 22, 2012. For the first time, the traffic safety initiative known as Operation Air, Land and Speed will target almost every interstate in the Commonwealth to include Interstates 64, 66, 85, 81 and 95 during the special enforcement operation.
RICHMOND – Motorists traveling through the Commonwealth this Labor Day weekend can expect to see stepped up enforcement by the Virginia State Police. Troopers will provide stationary and roving patrols across Virginia’s highways as the last holiday weekend of the summer season kicks-off. Last year, Virginia experienced a significant spike in traffic deaths during the Labor Day weekend when 16 people lost their lives during the four-day holiday statistical counting period. In 2010 and 2009, a total of 13 people were killed in traffic crashes during the Labor Day holiday weekend.
Celebrating its twenty-third year in Virginia, the Law Enforcement Challenge program promotes professionalism in traffic safety enforcement and encourages agencies to share best practices and programs with each other. The awards are based on entries prepared by the participating agencies that highlight their traffic safety education and enforcement activities in the past calendar year. Judges award points to the agencies in the six areas that comprise a comprehensive traffic safety program: an agency’s policies and guidelines, training of officers, incentives and recognition, public information and education, enforcement, and an evaluation of the effectiveness of the agency’s efforts.
RICHMOND – Preliminary numbers indicate that 10 individuals died in nine crashes during the 2012 Fourth of July holiday weekend. In 2011, 14 people were killed in traffic crashes over a four-day holiday weekend.* Despite the slight decrease in deaths from the previous Independence Day weekend, traffic deaths are still on the rise in Virginia. According to preliminary numbers, as of Monday, July 9, 2012, 373 lives have been lost to traffic crashes in the Commonwealth compared to 358 on the same date in 2011.
Victims who died during the 2012 Fourth of July holiday ranged in age from 15 to 75. The double fatality involved two male teenagers, ages 15 and 17, in Wise County. Two separate fatal crashes involved motorcyclists, both of whom were wearing motorcycle helmets. The motorcycle fatalities occurred in Franklin and Halifax counties. A 48-year-old pedestrian was killed in the City of Norfolk.
RICHMOND – With Virginians seeking out ways to keep cool in the extreme heat during the Fourth of July holiday and upcoming summer months, drivers are reminded to play it safe both on the waterways and highways across the Commonwealth. To reinforce this critical safety message, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF) Conservation Police and Virginia State Police (VSP) are launching a new, joint public service announcement on the deadly and illegal consequences of BUI - Boating Under the Influence - and DUI - Driving Under the Influence: DGIFYouTube
“This public service announcement reminds people of the importance of being safe while having fun on the water. Boating under the influence is not only dangerous to watercraft operators, but endangers everyone who enjoys Virginia's waterways,” according to VDGIF Chief of Law Enforcement, Col. Dee Watts.
RICHMOND – As we plan to observe our nation’s birthday, are you one of the millions of drivers planning to travel to celebrate with family and friends? You won’t be alone as traffic safety advocates expect a significant increase in the volume of traffic for the upcoming Independence Day holiday. With traffic deaths increasing this year, Virginia State Police reminds all drivers to continue to be vigilant about their safety while driving or riding in a vehicle. Preliminary numbers indicate that as of Wednesday, June 27, 2012, 336 lives have been lost on Virginia’s highways, compared to 327 on the same date in 2011.
Last year, there were a total of 14 traffic deaths during the Fourth of July holiday weekend. Unfortunately, Independence Day is also one of the deadliest holidays of the year due to alcohol-impaired driving crashes. During the 2011 July Fourth five-day statistical counting period, Virginia troopers stopped and arrested 117 impaired drivers.
RICHMOND - House Transportation Committee Chairman Joe May presented awards to the winners of the 2012 Virginia Governor's Transportation Safety Awards during a ceremony at the Capitol on Wednesday, June 6. The following individuals and organizations were honored for their outstanding contributions to transportation safety:
RICHMOND – Though not as deadly as last year, preliminary numbers indicate that seven drivers and two passengers died in traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways during the 2012 Memorial Day weekend. Last year, 12 individuals were killed in traffic crashes statewide.
The four-day statistical counting period began Friday morning, May 25, 2012, at 12:01 a.m. and continued through midnight, Monday, May 28, 2012. During that time, nine people died in nine traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways. Two of the fatal crashes took place in Goochland County and another two occurred in Halifax County. The remaining fatal crashes occurred in the counties of Alleghany, Augusta, Bath, Bedford, and Washington. In at least eight of the crashes, the driver or passenger was not wearing a seatbelt.
RICHMOND – If you plan to travel this Memorial Day holiday then prepare to buckle up, slow down and expect to see more Virginia State troopers on the roadways as part of the annual Operation C.A.R.E. traffic enforcement campaign. The Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (C.A.R.E.) is a state-sponsored, national program designed to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by speeding, impaired driving and failure to use occupant restraints. As a participating agency, State Police willincrease its visibility and traffic enforcement efforts throughout the Commonwealth beginning Friday morning, May 25, 2011, at 12:01 a.m. and continuing through midnight, Monday, May 28, 2012.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—A report released today by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) reveals that the number of 16- and 17-year-old driver deaths in passenger vehicles increased slightly for the first six months of 2011, based on preliminary data supplied by all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Overall, 16- and 17-year-old driver deaths increased from 190 to 211 – an 11 percent increase. If the trend continued for the second half of 2011, it will mark the end of eight straight years of cumulative declines in deaths for this age group.
The new report – the first state-by-state look at teen fatalities in 2011 – was completed by Dr. Allan Williams, a researcher who formerly served as chief scientist at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Dr. Williams surveyed GHSA members, who reported fatality numbers for every state and D.C. The report comes as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has released a statistical projection suggesting that total motor vehicle deaths for the first six months of 2011 declined 0.9 percent.
RICHMOND – Preliminary numbers indicate that fourteen individuals died in eleven crashes during the 2011 Labor Day holiday. This is a slight increase from the previous two years in which the Commonwealth experienced thirteen deaths. The four-day statistical counting period began at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Sept. 2, 2011, and ended at midnight, Monday, Sept. 5, 2011.
As part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's regional campaign, the Governor announced that drunk drivers on Virginia roadways will face the likelihood of arrest because state and local law enforcement officials are increasingly conducting sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols effective now through the end of the calendar year.
Since the inception of Virginia's Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign in 2002, alcohol-related traffic fatalities in the state have decreased by over 23-percent while alcohol-related traffic injuries in the Commonwealth have decreased by over 32-percent. In 2010, fewer individuals (274) were killed on Virginia highways due to alcohol than in any year since at least 1997 (302). The Governor credited this progress to the combination of effective public education and targeted enforcement. Read more...
RICHMOND – With Virginia experiencing severely high temperatures through the weekend, Virginians are advised to prepare themselves and their vehicles accordingly. Even though Virginia State Police Troopers and Motorist Assistance Aides are on heightened alert for disabled motorists along the highways during the extreme heat, there are still things motorists can do to make their trip safer and free of problems:
Virginia traffic deaths over the 2011 Fourth of July holiday weekend more than doubled compared to the same holiday weekend in 2010. In 2010, Virginia lost a total of six people during the four-day statistical counting period for the July 4th weekend. This year, preliminary reports indicate 13 people lost their lives in traffic crashes statewide during the four-day statistical counting period. (Historical holiday fatality totals: http://www.dmv.virginia.gov/webdoc/safety/crash_data/crash_facts/index.asp)
RICHMOND – Those traveling Virginia’s highways this Fourth of July holiday weekend can expect to see more State Police troopers on the highways. As part of the annual Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort, known as Operation C.A.R.E., the Virginia State Police will have 75 percent of its uniformed workforce on patrol Friday, July 1, through Monday, July 4, 2011.
RICHMOND — Senate Transportation Committee Chairwoman Yvonne Miller and House Transportation Committee Chairman Joe May presented awards to the winners of the 2011 Governor's Transportation Safety Awards during a ceremony at the Capitol on Wednesday, June 8, 2011. The following individuals and organizations were honored for their outstanding contributions to transportation safety.
RICHMOND – Virginia is once again experiencing a statewide decline in traffic deaths this year. According to preliminary numbers, there have been 239 reported traffic fatalities on Virginia’s highways between January 1, 2011, and midnight Wednesday, May 25, 2011. Last year during this same period, there were 280 reported traffic deaths statewide.
RICHMOND – Operation Air, Land, and Speed returned to Interstates 95 and 81 yielding 5,814 summonses and arrests during the two-day enforcement initiative which took place Sunday, May 22, and Monday, May 23, 2011. Once again, there were no reported fatalities on either interstate during the course of the operation. The last time Operation Air, Land & Speed focused on Interstates 95 and 81 was in March where 3,552 violations were cited by Virginia State Police.
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) - In an effort to save more lives on Virginia's roadways this spring, the Virginia Beach Police Department is partnering with State and other local law enforcement agencies to buckle down on all motorists not buckled up. Special seat belt checkpoints and other stepped-up law enforcement activities will be conducted during a heavy wave of enforcement, May 23 - June 5.
Virginia Law allows law enforcement to cite anyone driving a car in which an occupant under age 18 is not wearing a safety belt or is not properly secured in a child safety seat. The law also provides that drivers stopped for other violations can be cited if they are not properly restrained. This also applies to all front seat passengers
AAA released the results of its annual ‘Your Driving Costs’ study today revealing a 3.4 percent rise in the yearly costs to own and operate a sedan in the U.S. The average costs rose 1.9 cents per mile to 58.5 cents per mile, or $8,776 per year, based upon 15,000 miles of annual driving.
“Despite seeing reduced costs for maintenance and insurance this year, there is an overall increase in the costs to own and operate a vehicle in the U.S. this year,” said John Nielsen, AAA National Director of Auto Repair, Buying and Consumer Programs. “The 2011 rise in costs is due to relatively large increases in fuel, tire and depreciation costs as well as more moderate increases in other areas.” Read more
"Last year's drop in traffic fatalities is welcome news and it proves that we can make a difference," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "Still, too many of our friends and neighbors are killed in preventable roadway tragedies every day. We will continue doing everything possible to make cars safer, increase seat belt use, put a stop to drunk driving and distracted driving and encourage drivers to put safety first." Read more
March 21, 2011 NHTSA Releases New Child Seat Guidelines
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has revised its child restraint guidelines to be categorized by age rather than by type of child seat in order to keep pace with the latest scientific and medical research and the development of new child restraint technologies.
Under the new guidelines, issued today, NHTSA is advising parents and caregivers to keep children in each restraint type, including rear-facing, forward-facing and booster seats, for as long as possible before moving them up to the next type of seat.
March 16, 2011 SoberRide offers free cab rides for St. Patrick's day WASHINGTON - For those of you planning to down a few green beers or other adult beverages on St. Patrick's Day, SoberRide will be up and running to provide free cab rides. Rides will be provided from 4 p.m. Thursday, March 17 to 4 a.m. Friday, March 18.
You need to call 800-200-8294 (TAXI) or text #8294 (TAXI) on your AT&T wireless phone to get a cab ride. Don't call the taxi company. You won't get the free ride. The ride is free, up to $30 in fares, for people who are 21 or older. Read more
Each new officer will need to participate at least 16 hours per month in order to stay active in the auxiliary program. White said that he plans to use the auxiliary officers in a number of different ways.
“They’ll be assigned to fill in for officers on vacation, help with events like parades or special enforcement efforts like ‘Click It or Ticket’” White said. “They can also help us avoid overtime costs.” Read more
Additional officers will be out on St. Patrick's Day and the patrols will continue through the weekend. Read more
March 1, 2011 The Ford inflatable seat belt: How it affects car seats and children
Ford is offering inflatable seat belts for the outboard-rear-seat passengers as a new safety equipment option on 2011 Explorers. The option will be available sometime between late April and late May, according to Ford. The technology does just as the name says—in a crash, a tubular airbag “unzips” from the seams of the seat belt across the occupant’s chest.
The inflatable seat belts have two advantages: First, they spread the crash force over a wider area of the body, potentially reducing the risk of injury to the chest. Second, deployment of the bag tightens the belt, reducing forward movement and reducing the potential for head injury.
Though we foresaw the potential advantages for all rear-seat passengers, as child passenger safety technicians and parents we had some serious concerns. Were the airbags hot, once deployed, like front airbags are? Are the belts thicker, and if so, how is that going to affect child-car-seat installation features such as belt lock-offs, which are already sometimes difficult to use? How does the deployment of the bags affect a child in a child seat installed with the belts? How would the deploying belt affect a sleeping or slouching child seated very close to it? Read more
In anticipation of the number of individuals celebrating St. Patrick’s Day next week, officers from the Virginia Beach Police Department’s Special Operations Traffic Division will be conducting numerous traffic safety checkpoints on March 17th. The purpose of these checkpoints is to identify traffic offenders and those who are driving while impaired. Those traveling through Virginia Beach may see message boards reminding them to celebrate responsibly. Officers will hold multiple saturation patrols and checkpoints throughout the weekend before and after St. Patrick’s Day. Read more
The Stafford County Sheriff’s Office announces the start of a year long public safety initiative called Survive the Drive Campaign. This campaign aims to provide education, information and solutions to keep the roadways of Stafford County safe. The campaign is designed to reduce crashes in Stafford County and gain compliance in traffic laws through education and compliance. Read more
RICHMOND – Preliminary reports indicate 14 people died in 12 traffic crashes on Virginia’s highways during the Christmas and New Year’s holiday weekends. Ten people died in eight crashes during the 2010 Christmas holiday statistical counting period; and there are four reported fatal crashes during the 2010-2011 New Year’s holiday statistical counting period. In 2009, 11 people were killed in traffic crashes over a four-day Christmas holiday; five traffic fatalities occurred during the four-day 2009-2010 New Year’s holiday. Read more
RICHMOND- During the final month of 2010, Virginia State Police are urging Virginia’s drivers to make sure they hear the ringing of holiday bells instead of the jingling of handcuffs. The holidays are particularly deadly due to the high number of drunk drivers on the roads. Impaired driving leads to too many tragic consequences. In 2009, 316 people were killed and another 6,256 persons were injured in alcohol-related traffic crashes across Virginia.*
”With the spike in drunken driving arrests by troopers this past holiday weekend, there are still too many Virginians out there not getting the message to never drink and drive,” says Colonel W. Steven Flaherty. “During this holiday season, troopers will be patrolling for drunk drivers who ignore the law. Virginians must make the smart choice - put the keys down and ride with a sober driver.”
To remind motorists once again about making responsible choices while driving, the Virginia State Police are today launching a new video on YouTube and its Website. The public safety message reminds drivers to avoid drunk driving, to wear seatbelts and to “move over” for emergency workers on the side of the road. (http://www.vsp.state.va.us) Read more
RICHMOND – As traffic deaths substantially decreased over the 2010 Thanksgiving holiday weekend, the number of drunken driving arrests by State Police increased by roughly 33 percent. From 12:01 a.m. Wednesday (Nov. 24) through midnight Sunday (Nov. 28), preliminary reports indicate nine people died in traffic crashes statewide. In 2009, 16 people lost their lives in traffic crashes during the five-day Thanksgiving weekend.
But the holiday still posed a serious safety threat with a significant increase in drunken driving arrests. Virginia Troopers took 175 drunken drivers off the highways statewide during the same five-day statistical counting period. Out of those arrests, 119 of them took place on a Virginia interstate. During the 2009 holiday weekend, State Police arrested 132 impaired drivers. Read more
State police will have 75 percent of its uniformed workforce on patrol from 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 24, through midnight Sunday, Nov. 28, 2010. Troopers will again be participating in Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (C.A.R.E.). The annual, nationwide, state-sponsored campaign is designed to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by impaired driving, speeding and a failure to buckle up. Read more
RICHMOND – It is easy, takes minimal effort, and is the most effective way to reduce injury or death in a crash. What is this hassle-free device? Your seatbelt and it can prevent you from being the next fatal statistic in Virginia. Unfortunately, as of Oct. 15, 2010, at least 246 men, women and children who failed to buckle up have died in traffic crashes in Virginia. Read more
RICHMOND –Joseph L. Cannon poured a Schlitz Malt Liquor into a clear plastic cup. A foamy head formed on the amber brew. Next, he poured blue-raspberry Four Loko and an orange Monster into separate cups. They fizzed slightly but didn't foam.
Looking at Four Loko and Monster, "you can't tell the difference," said Cannon, a special agent for the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. Unless you drink it. Read more
RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell today announced that the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) will post 70 mph speed limits on 680 miles of interstates no later than December 31, 2010. While campaigning for governor, McDonnell proposed the speed limit increase to 70 mph in rural and less populated areas as a way to improve transportation in the Commonwealth. This change will result in 61 percent of Virginia's 1,119 miles of intestates being posted at 70 mph.
Speaking about the new postings, Governor McDonnell noted, "The increase in the speed limit from 65 to 70 mph in rural and less populated areas of the state will help Virginians arrive at their destinations quicker and safer and will speed the delivery of goods and services throughout the commonwealth. This is just one step forward in our efforts to significantly improve Virginia's transportation system." Read more
RICHMOND – In an effort to reduce traffic crashes, fatalities and injuries, Virginia State Police increased patrols along Interstates 81, 95 and 85 as part of the latest Operation Air, Land and Speed enforcement effort. The two-day traffic safety initiative began Saturday, Sept. 17, 2010 and ended Sunday, Sept. 18, 2010. As a result of the increase in troopers along all three targeted interstates, no fatal traffic crashes were reported during the special weekend safety project.
Troopers and supervisors stopped a total of 2,705 speeders, 618 reckless drivers and 19 drunk drivers. In addition, 125 adult seat belt violations were cited and 17 felony/drug arrests were made. The operation yielded 4,866 total summonses and arrests. Read more
RICHMOND – Motorists will notice an increase in troopers on the road this weekend as part of another stepped-up traffic enforcement project. Operation Air, Land and Speed resumes Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010, and runs through Sunday, Sept. 19, 2010, along the north-south Interstates of 81 and 95. The enhanced patrols are aimed at improving traffic safety on both stretches of highway by increasing the presence of state troopers in an effort to deter fatal crashes and reckless driving behavior. Read more
RICHMOND - Preliminary data indicates traffic deaths for 2010 have decreased slightly compared to fatalities for this same time period in 2009. As of August 31, there were 481 road deaths so far in 2010, compared to 490 for January 1 through August 31, 2009. Of the 481 deaths this year, most (159) occurred on primary highways and the least amount (62) occurred on interstates in Virginia.
There were 756 traffic fatalities in Virginia last year, the lowest number in one year since traffic deaths began being recorded in 1966. The number is nearly a 27 percent decrease in fatalities from the high of 1,026 road deaths in 2007. Read more
RICHMOND – Virginia’s highways proved to be considerably safer over the 2010 Labor Day weekend than in 2009. Last year over the holiday weekend 14 people lost their lives in traffic crashes in Virginia. From 12:01 a.m. Friday, Sept. 3, 2010, through midnight Monday, Sept. 6, 2010, preliminary reports indicate eight people died in six traffic crashes statewide. Troopers responded to a total of 378 traffic crashes; 141 fewer than the 2009 Labor Day holiday weekend.
There were also fewer drunk driving arrests on Virginia’s highways by state police during this past holiday weekend. In 2009, 164 impaired drivers were stopped and placed under arrest. In 2010, state police took 132 drunk drivers off the Commonwealth’s roads. Read more
RICHMOND – As Labor Day traffic on Virginia’s highways increases so will the presence of Virginia State Police troopers. Motorists traversing the Commonwealth this holiday weekend can expect to see 75-percent of the State Police’s uniformed workforce on patrol statewide. Last year, Virginia experienced a sharp rise in traffic deaths over the Labor Day weekend with 14 people losing their lives during the four-day holiday statistical counting period. Seven were killed in traffic crashes in 2008.
State police Thursday joined Governor Bob McDonnell, the Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) and local law enforcement to kick off Virginia’s annual Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign, which is a region-wide effort that combines stepped-up enforcement efforts and proactive public education to promote a multijurisdictional effort in the fight against drunk driving. Read more
During the 2010 General Assembly session, Delegate Glenn Oder introduced HB 1240, a bill to require taxicabs to bear roof signs and markings identifying them as taxicabs. The legislation was introduced at the request of the taxicab operators to distinguish their vehicles from medical transport vehicles that may be tagged with taxi license plates.
At Delegate Oder’s request, and with the support of the Department of Motor Vehicles, the Virginia Taxicab Association and the Virginia Municipal League, the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police is requesting that all Virginia law enforcement agencies suspend their enforcement of this statute until notice is received in 2011 that corrective changes have been made to the law. Read more
(Aug. 25, 2010) WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation today kicked off the annual Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. campaign aimed at getting drunk drivers off the road. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also released new data today indicating that eight percent of all drivers, as many as 17 million people, have driven drunk at least once during the past year.
The law enforcement crackdown will run through Labor Day and involve thousands of police agencies from across the nation. Enforcement efforts are supported by $13 million in television and radio advertising from NHTSA.
“Drunk driving is deadly, it’s against the law, and unfortunately, it’s still a problem,” said Secretary LaHood. “With the help of law enforcement around the country, we are going to continue doing all that we can to stop drunk driving and the needless tragedies that result from this reckless behavior.”
NHTSA’s research revealed that about one in five Americans have driven within two hours of drinking alcohol in the past year. Four out of five Americans identified drunk driving as a “major threat” to their own and their family’s safety. Read more
RICHMOND – Were you driving along Interstate 64 or Intestate 66 this weekend? If so, then you probably noticed Operation Air, Land & Speed in effect. The weekend safety campaign has been part of the Virginia State Police traffic safety initiative since 2006. The enforcement effort began Saturday, Aug. 21, 2010 through Sunday, Aug. 22, 2010 with an increase in troopers and resulted in 4,016 traffic violations for both interstates. Read more
RICHMOND – With hundreds of new and returning college students taking to Virginia’s highways this weekend, Virginia State Police will be increasing patrols along Interstate 64 and Interstate 66 to ensure traffic moves safely. The two-day initiative is part of state police’s continuing traffic-safety program called Operation Air, Land and Speed.
“This weekend was specifically selected for an enforcement operation because of the significant increase in traffic associated with students heading off to college in and out of state,” said Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “Hopefully parents will have one less thing to worry about knowing more state police will be patrolling Virginia’s interstates looking for dangerous and reckless drivers.”
On Saturday, Aug. 21, through Sunday night, Aug. 22, 2010, state police troopers, supervisors, motorcycle units and motor carrier teams will saturate the entire lengths of Interstate 64 and 66 as part of Operation Air, Land & Speed. State police operational duties on other interstates, primary and secondary roads will not be affected during the operation. Read more
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Drunk driving is not an accident—it’s an epidemic of blatant disregard for human life. Each year, nearly 12,000 people die on our roads due to drunk driving. That would be equal to about 30 jumbo jets crashing each year. In California alone, over 1,000 people died at the hands of drunk drivers in 2008.
No one should ever get that late-night phone call from the police telling you your loved one has died due to a drunk driver. This is why GHSA's member State Highway Safety Offices are joining forces with law enforcement officers across the country to take part in the national Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. crackdown this Labor Day holiday period.
From August 20 through September 6, police in every state will be out in full force conducting sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols to catch drunk drivers. This high visibility law enforcement is supported by $31 million in national and state advertisements. Read more
At the Virginia Law Enforcement Challenge Awards Luncheon on Monday, August 9 during the VACP Annual Conference, 2009-10 VACP President Chief Doug Scott, Arlington County Police, and the Virginia Highway Safety Committee announced the recipients of the top awards in the Challenge program.
The Lynchburg Police Department was presented with the 2009 Commonwealth Award for having the best overall traffic safety program in the Challenge, regardless of agency size or type. Their program showed the best use of policies, training, public information and education, incentives and recognition, and enforcement to address the issues of occupant protection, impaired driving and speeding.
Additionally, the Highway Safety Committee announced that Sgt. Peter Mainzer of the Albemarle County Police Department was selected as the 2009 Traffic Safety Officer of the Year for his work to address the problem of an increase in fatalities on a section of Route 29 in the county. He sought out partnerships to increase public awareness of the need to drive safely and arranged for stepped up enforcement, which reduced the numbe of fatalities to zero during the enforcement period.
To see the full list of 2009 Challenge Award recipients, click here.
RICHMOND – If you were speeding, driving recklessly or driving impaired on Interstate 81 or 95, then you were one of the thousands of motorists cited during the weekend as part of Virginia State Police’s Operation Air, Land & Speed traffic-safety enforcement effort. During the special initiative, there were no fatal traffic crashes reported on either interstate.
From July 17, 2010 through July 18, 2010, Virginia State Police stopped a total of 3,313 speeders, 628 reckless drivers and 12 drunk drivers between both interstates. A total of 248 safety belt violations were cited, and 15 drug and felony arrests were made by state troopers. The operation yielded 6,264 total summonses and arrests. Read more
RICHMOND – During the July 4 holiday, traffic fatalities declined once again across Virginia. Of the 743 traffic crashes that state police responded to during the four-day statistical counting period, preliminary reports indicate that five of the crashes resulted in five deaths. In 2009, nine people were killed over a three-day holiday weekend.* The last time the Commonwealth experienced a significant drop in fatal traffic collisions during the Independence holiday weekend was in 2002 when two individuals lost their lives in the Commonwealth.
The five fatal crashes occurred in the city of Suffolk and the counties of Accomack, Fairfax, Nottoway and Rockingham. Three of the crashes occurred on Monday, July 5, 2010. Read more
RICHMOND – Sadly, the Memorial Day weekend proved to be a deadly one on Virginia’s highways. During the four-day statistical counting period, which began at 12:01 a.m. Friday, May 28, 2010, ended at midnight Monday, May 31, 2010, preliminary reports indicate 10 men and women died in 10 traffic crashes across the Commonwealth. Last year, seven people died during the Memorial Day weekend. Read more
Spotsylvania mother honored for proper seat belt use in dangerous crash Erica Davison, 32, was driving to pick up a television for her Lake Anna home on the night of Dec. 4, 2009. It was early evening, shortly after 6. Davison was behind the wheel of her Ford Explorer Sport Trac, with her children--Tyler Davison, 10, and Macie Davison, 6--buckled up in the truck's back seat. Friend Jason Morgan, 34, was riding in the front passenger seat.
The drive on Stubbs Bridge Road was uneventful. Then, suddenly, another truck appeared in their lane, headed straight at them. There was no time to react, Morgan said. Read more
May 27, 2010 Click It Or Ticket Campaign In Albemarle Albemarle County Police are hitting the streets for their annual Click-It-or-Ticket campaign. Wednesday, police set up a checkpoint alongside Old Lynchburg Road. They stopped cars to check for drivers without licenses, unsafe vehicles and drivers not wearing seatbelts. Police say their main priority is reminding people to buckle up. Read more
RICHMOND – Those traveling this holiday weekend can expect to see more Virginia State Police on the roadways statewide as part of the annual Operation C.A.R.E. traffic enforcement campaign. The Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (C.A.R.E.) is a state-sponsored, national program designed to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by speeding, impaired driving and failure to use occupant restraints. As a participating agency, State Police willincrease its visibility and traffic enforcement efforts throughout the Commonwealth beginning Friday morning, May 28, 2010, at 12:01 a.m. and continuing through midnight, Monday, May 31, 2010. Read more
New Market Police in Click It or Ticket Blitz
In 2009, Virginia had the highest recorded seat belt use rate in history at 82.27 percent. Even with that good news, 756 citizens lost their lives on Virginia roadways. Of those, 333 individuals were not wearing seat belts at the time of the crash.
That’s why the New Market Police Department, in partnership with agencies along routes 7 and 11 in Virginia, will come together Friday and beyond for the Click It or Ticket Blitz to enforce traffic laws in advance of the heavily traveled Memorial Day weekend. Read more
AAA recommends that any child up to age 8 or 4 feet 9 inches tall should be secured in a child safety seat or booster seat. However, only about one in four (26%) survey respondents could identify proper child safety seat age and height recommendations. Additionally, less than half of parents surveyed (44%) knew the safest position for a single car seat was the center of the rear seat. Read more
Today, a House Committee gave further consideration to the Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 2010, legislation responding to crashes associated with recently-reported vehicle failures.
AAA calls for at least 10 percent of all transportation investment to be spent on safety (currently we devote less than 4% to safety) to fund better data collection systems, road improvements and use of evidence-based strategies to change the culture of complacency about transportation safety. We need to ensure that legislation and regulation result in funding for the countermeasures that have the greatest impact on saving lives, and reducing crashes. Read more
RICHMOND – A two-day traffic safety program by Virginia State Police troopers resulted in thousands of speeders and reckless drivers receiving citations as part of the Department’s Operation Air, Land and Speed initiative. The enforcement effort began Sunday, May 23, and concluded Monday, May 24, 2010. Troopers patrolled the north-south corridors of both interstates and there were no fatal traffic crashes reported on either interstate during the entire operation.
Virginia State Police cited 6,081 summonses and arrests between both I-81 and I-95 during the May enforcement blitz. Troopers stopped a total of 3,263 speeders, 557 reckless drivers and 16 drunk drivers. The operation yielded 21 drug and felony arrests and there were 252 safety belt violations. Read more
The current law requires passengers under age 16 to be belted in the back seat. Drivers will be responsible for making sure all passengers under age 18 are secured in a safety restraint or car seat.
Passengers 18 and older are responsible for themselves and face the $25 fine for riding unrestrained. Current law already requires everyone in the front seat to wear a seat belt. Read more
Safety Campaigns Underway on Virginia's Roads
Before putting the car into drive, more people are buckling up, according to a new report released Monday by the U.S. Department of Transportation. However, according to the same report, 1.4 million Virginians still do not.
Campaigns are underway to change that and to improve overall driver safety on Virginia roads. The annual "Click It or Ticket" initiative is going on, with law enforcement agencies across the country taking part.
'Click It or Ticket' begins in the Roanoke Valley
State Police will also be giving you a reminder, in the form of a ticket if you do not wear your seatbelt as part of the Click It or Ticket campaign. Drivers we talked to aren't surprised so many Americans still refuse to buckle up. Read more
May 24, 2010 U.S. DOT Targets 45 Million Americans Still Not Buckling Up
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood today announced that while seat belt use is at a record high 84 percent nationwide, 45 million Americans are still not buckling up when riding in motor vehicles. In an effort to increase belt use and save lives, the Secretary today kicked off Click It or Ticket, a national enforcement mobilization that encourages all motorists to wear their seat belts – day and night. Drivers caught not wearing their seat belt run the risk of being ticketed.
On any given day about 38 people who are not buckled-up are killed in motor vehicle crashes, according to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In 2008 alone, nearly 14,000 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants lost their lives on U.S. roadways. Nearly half of them could have been saved if they had been belted. Click here to view map.
Purcellville Police To Push Seatbelt Enforcement
The Purcellville Police Department is joining a May 24-June 6 campaign by law enforcement officers, highway safety officials and safety advocates nationwide to address the issue of seatbelt enforcement.
May 23, 2010 Interstates 95 & 81 Focus of VSP's Upcoming Operation Air, Land & Speed Enforcement
Increased Uniform Patrols Coincide with Click It or Ticket Campaign
RICHMOND - Troopers will increase patrols along two Virginia interstates as part of the Virginia State Police safety program known as Operation Air, Land and Speed. Interstates 95 and 81 are the focus of this May enforcement blitz which begins Sunday, May 23, and continues through Monday, May 24, 2010. Troopers will conduct roaming patrols and radar along the entire north-south corridors of both interstates during the two-day traffic safety initiative.
April 28, 2010 Focus on road, not gadgets, drivers urged
Chowing down on a burger, reading something on an iPhone, fiddling with compact discs, picking up a rolling soda bottle, comforting a wailing child: they’re all fine things to do, just not while driving. That was the point police and safety experts made Wednesday with a plea for motorists to concentrate on driving.
“We are too smart to be killing ourselves and others by doing what we know is wrong,” said Martha Meade of AAA Mid-Atlantic during a news conference held to mark Virginia’s Distracted Driving Awareness Day (April is also the first-ever National Distracted Driving Awareness Month).
More than 80 percent of those queried in a AAA poll this spring want stricter penalties for distracted driving and more education on the issue, but 44 percent of the group also admits to engaging in the same behaviors. Read more
EXMORE -- Steve Elliott respected pets and animals, and on Wednesday night, he was driving toward Pungoteague on Big Pine Road with two dogs to take care of some horses.
As he neared his destination, the front right tire blew out on the 1985 Ford pickup he was driving, State Police said. The vehicle ran off the road to the left, overturned and ejected Elliott, killing him. Elliott's death shocked the town, which on June 10 lost longtime former mayor Guy Lawson, who also was fatally injured in a car crash. Read more
April 15, 2010 Exmore, Va. police chief dies in single-vehicle crash
Police Chief Stephen Trader Elliott, 64, was driving on Route 609, a mile south of Route 178 in Accomack County, shortly before 7 p.m. when the front left tire of his 1985 Ford truck blew out, said Sgt. Michelle Cotten, a Virginia State Police spokeswoman. His truck ran off the road to the left, overturned in a field and ejected him.
Elliott was not wearing a seatbelt and alcohol was not a factor in the crash, Cotten said. Read more
Troopers and supervisors stopped a total of 1,025 speeders, 347 reckless drivers and four drunk drivers during the two-day safety effort on I-295, I-85 and I-77. In addition, 100 adult and child seat belt violations were cited and 12 felony/drug arrests were made. There were zero traffic fatalities on the designated interstates during the enforcement period. Read more
By targeting aggressive drivers, speeders and impaired drivers, Virginia State Police hope to further reduce the chances of traffic crashes, injuries and fatalities from occurring on the three selected interstate corridors. Read more
FAIRFAX CO. – As the Virginia State Police Fairfax Division saturated the interstates of Northern Virginia Wednesday afternoon into early Thursday morning, it appears a majority of St. Patrick’s Day revelers chose not to drive drunk. During the special enforcement effort a total of six drunken driving arrests were made. Read more
March 16, 2010 Don't Depend on Dumb Luck
AAA Mid-Atlantic and the Virginia State Police Urge Motorists to Drive Responsibly This St. Patrick's Day
RICHMOND, VA – As there will be many celebrations throughout the Commonwealth this week, AAA Mid-Atlantic and the Virginia State Police are joining together to urge the public to help keep the streets safe this St. Patrick’s Day by drinking responsibly and designating a sober driver before heading to the local pub or a party. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), on St. Patrick’s Day 2008, nationwide 37 percent of traffic fatalities during the holiday involved a drunk driver. According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, in 2008 there were 45 alcohol-related crashes on Virginia roadways during the holiday.
In one case, it saved a dog's life and earned the pooch and her owner the Va. Highway Safety Office's Saved by the Belt award.
Isabella, a three-year-old Bernese Mountain Dog, and owner Marie Bentley survived a serious car accident in Portsmouth last April.
Police credit the seat belts, and in Isabella's case a canine belt, and airbags for saving their lives.
"Secure our pets. They are like our family, but moreover, secure any passenger that is in the vehicle, whether it's a two-legged or four-legged kind," said Maryann Rayment with the Va. Highway Safety Office.
Bentley says she's used a canine belt since Isabella was six months old.
Jean Marie W. Bentley was driving April 28 in Portsmouth when her vehicle was hit in the front, causing the air bags to deploy. Her dog, Isabelle, was secured by a canine seat belt, which saved Isabelle from injuries and kept her contained while emergency responders attended to Bentley, according to a summary from Detective John Doyle, a police spokesman.
Bentley suffered a broken right arm, Doyle said.
The Virginia Highway Safety Office will award Bentley and Isabelle with the Saved By the Belt award at 2 p.m. Tuesday at the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame.
RICHMOND – Thousands of speeders and hundreds of reckless drivers and seat-belt violators were cited during the weekend as part of Virginia State Police’s Operation Air, Land & Speed traffic-safety enforcement effort on Interstates 81 and 95. During the two-day initiative, there were no fatal traffic crashes reported on either interstate. Read more
March 3, 2010 Gretna students receive lesson in driving safety
On Feb. 18, a figure dressed in black from head to toe walked the halls of Gretna High School. Carrying a scythe, Amber Moser, who portrayed the grim reaper, "claimed" 25 of the 650 students at Gretna.
The Grim Reaper Day was sponsored by the school's Youth of Virginia Speak Out About Traffic Safety (YOVASO) organization in an effort to promote car safety. Read more
Dozens of officers across the country have died in crashes while not wearing seat belts in recent years — at least 64 between 2004 and 2008 alone, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data analyzed for the Houston Chronicle. About 40 percent of officers killed in wrecks during that time period weren't buckled up, the analysis showed.
“The average police officer thinks most cops get killed by felons, and that's not true. Cops are getting killed in traffic accidents,” said Richard Ashton, who studies traffic safety for the International Association of Chiefs of Police. “Officers don't think it can happen to them.” Read more
"Lots of real estate listings," commented Stephanie Slater, the BBPD's public information officer and chief media spokesperson, sitting in front of the monitor. "A few people are just tweeting news headlines about what's going on in town. Nothing really."
Slater, a former cop-beat reporter for the local Palm Beach Post, was keeping tabs on a Twitter search query for Boynton Beach to see what users of the chatty service are saying about the city of 65,000. She's also in charge of maintaining the police department's own Twitter account, its Facebook fan page, and its library of YouTube videos. As law enforcement's role in the social-media universe has increasingly become a topic of discussion and debate, the BBPD has become one of the first police departments in the country to step forward and say that they think they've figured it out. Read more
January 31, 2010 U.S. 29 South claims far too many lives
Last year seven people died in five wrecks on the 29-mile stretch of pavement between Interstate 64 and Nelson County. They ran off the road in rain and snow. They ran off the road in the bright of day. They slammed into each other at intersections.
“It’s strange to have so many fatal accidents on that side of U.S. 29,” said Sgt. Pete Mainzer, head of the Albemarle County Police Department’s traffic division. “It’s out of the ordinary for that to happen.” Read more
The holdouts include Kat Velkoff, who turned 17 in Chantilly without a license. Focused on tough classes, the debate team, dance and color guard, she turned 18 without taking the wheel. Then 19.
"It just wasn't a priority," said Velkoff, who got her license last year at 20. "It was just never the next thing that needed to get done in my life." Read more
January 8, 2010 Ramping up advocacy for safe-driving club
Morgan Dillon has taken a role in program development with Youth of Virginia Speak Out.
Dillon, now 21, recently graduated from Ferrum College with a bachelor's degree in criminal justice. Sticking to her original commitment, Dillon began her new career this week as the program development coordinator for YOVASO. Read more
January 5, 2010 Virginia Traffic Fatalities Drop Again in Virginia for 2009
Three killed in traffic crashes over New Year's Holiday RICHMOND – Once again, Virginia experienced a decline in traffic fatalities ending the year with a reported 750 deaths across the Commonwealth. The fatality count includes the deaths of 70 pedestrians. The 2009 preliminary number is significantly lower than in 2008 in which 821 individuals lost their lives due to traffic crashes. Read more
December 28, 2009 Christmas Holiday Traffic Fatalities Increase in 2009 Four Teens Among 10 Killed in Traffic Crashes Sitewide RICHMOND – Holiday celebrations quickly turned sorrowful for 10 families who lost a loved one to a traffic crash during the Christmas holiday weekend. Preliminary numbers report 10 individuals were killed in eight traffic crashes statewide. The four-day Christmas statistical counting period began Thursday, Dec. 24, 2009, and concluded at midnight Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009. During last year’s five-day Christmas statistical counting period, six people lost their lives in traffic crashes statewide.
Of the 10 killed, four were teenagers. A 19-year-old female and 16-year-old female were killed in a traffic crash in Prince Edward County on Christmas Eve. Neither one was wearing a safety belt. The teenagers were thrown from the vehicle they were riding in as it overturned multiple times. Read more
The Remington police want to be your BFF
REMINGTON — From a small downtown office in a small Fauquier County town, the Remington Police Department is utilizing the latest online tools to connect with the community.
The department uses Facebook, Twitter and Nixle, a free online service geared toward government agencies. Sgt. Charles Proffitt handles the department’s online presence.
“The chief wanted more community involvement,” said Proffitt, one of six officers in the department. Read more
December 17, 2009 Major storm could bring foot of snow Saturday
The snow, mainly on Saturday, should come courtesy of a nor’easter that’s expected to move up the East Coast over the next couple of days. The snow should be heaviest in western and Central Virginia and lighter near the coast. Read more
Celebrate With Your Loved Ones This Holiday Season — Drive Safe & Sober
Dec. 18-20, 2009 — Operation CARE/Holiday Lifesaver Weekend RICHMOND – The holidays are a time of festivity, fun and celebration with family, friends and coworkers. However, this is also a time of responsibility and safety when it comes to getting behind the wheel to drive. Even though Virginia is experiencing a 13 percent decline this year in traffic fatalities, more than 669 individuals have already been killed in crashes statewide because of an individual’s careless and reckless actions. Read more
209 HOV violators cited in crackdown in Northern Virginia
Police had given advance warning that they would be ticketing along Northern Virginia's HOV lanes Wednesday morning, but more than 200 drivers apparently paid them no heed. That will cost them $125 to $1,000, depending on how often they've gotten caught driving alone in lanes reserved for vehicles with more than one occupant during rush hour.
State and local police joined forces to target drivers who try to slip into HOV lanes on three interstates -- 66, 95, 395 -- and the Dulles Toll Road during three hours of intense enforcement that ended at 9 a.m. Wednesday. Read more
December 16, 2009 Traffic Deaths in Virginia Decrease in 2009 Seat belt usage reported at historic high 82% RICHMOND – Governor Timothy M. Kaine today noted that as of November 30, 2009 preliminary data indicates there were 98 fewer traffic fatalities in Virginia compared to this same time period last year, a decline of 13 percent. The 821 traffic fatalities recorded for 2008 were the lowest since 1966.
"It's clear that our coordinated efforts, and the increased use of seat belts, are having a positive effect on the number of traffic deaths in Virginia," Governor Kaine said. "While I am gratified to see our efforts paying off, we must continue to be vigilant and careful to ensure that this trend continues." Read more
AAA Projects Year-End Holidays Will See a 3.8 Percent Increase in Travelers
The number of travelers by automobile is expected to be 77.7 million in 2009 compared to 74.4 million last year; an increase of 4.4 percent. The number of travelers by air is expected be 4.2 million compared to 4.1 million in 2008; an increase of 2.9 percent. The number of those traveling by “other” means, including, trains, watercraft, buses and multiple-modes of transportation, is expected to be 5.8 million compared to 6.0 million last year, AAA said. Last year, the total number of travelers during the year-end holidays was 84.5 million; a decline of 4.7 percent from 2007. Read more
In addition, inside the Beltway, State Police will be teaming up with Arlington County Police, Fairfax County Police and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Police to conduct the special HOV enforcement operation. Read more
December 7, 2009 Operation AIr, Land & Speed Initiative Results in 2,264 Violations on Interstates 64 & 66
Two-Day Safety Campaign Cut Short Due To Inclement Weather RICHMOND - Operation Air, Land and Speed concluded its final enforcement phase of 2009 concentrating on Interstate 64 and Interstate 66 and producing a total of 2,264 violations. Due to Saturday’s inclement weather and hazardous conditions across the Commonwealth, Virginia State Police shortened the traffic safety initiative to one day – Dec. 4, 2009. The operation was originally scheduled to proceed for two consecutive days and conclude on Dec. 5, 2009. Read more
U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood Announces Intensive Holiday Drunk & Impaired Driving Crackdown & Advertising Blitz
New Data Show States with Best & Worst Improvement in Drunk Driving Fatality Rates U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and R. Gil Kerlikowske, Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, today kicked off the "Over the Limit. Under Arrest" national drunk and impaired driving crackdown involving thousands of law enforcement agencies during the holiday season. In addition, Secretary LaHood announced new data showing states with the best – and worst – improvement over the last year in addressing drunk driving behavior. Read more
December 3, 2009 Virginia State Police Resumes Another Round of Operation Air, Land and Speed Interstates 64 & 66 Focus of Specialized Enforcement Patrols RICHMOND – The highly visible Operation Air, Land and Speed intended to enhance highway safety and reduce traffic fatalities returns Dec. 4, 2009, and Dec. 5, 2009 on Interstate 64 and Interstate 66. Increased uniform patrols will stretch across the east-west borders of both interstates during the two day traffic safety initiative. Read more
November 30, 2009 Thirteen People Killed on Virginia Highways During the 2009 Thanksgiving Holiday RICHMOND – While traffic fatalities overall are on the decline compared to this time last year, the number of fatal crashes remained high for the 2009 Thanksgiving holiday. Preliminary totals indicate 13 individuals were killed in 13 crashes during the five-day statistical counting period. Traffic crashes during the 2008 Thanksgiving holiday period claimed 12 lives. Read more
November 25, 2009 Life after a DUI conviction EDITOR'S NOTE: The following story is part 3 in a three-part series on drunk driving. This week, we explore what happens to individuals after they’ve been convicted of driving under the influence. (Click here to read part 1 in the series about sobriety testing and how arrests are made. Click here to read part 2 about "Going to court: What happens after a DUI arrest".)
In her role as executive director of the Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program’s (VASAP) John Tyler chapter, Maureen Earley interacts on a daily basis with county residents who have been convicted at least once of driving under the influence of alcohol or illegal narcotics.
She’s heard every excuse you could imagine, and then some. Her response is always the same: The sooner you take responsibility for your actions, the sooner you can make the necessary changes to get your life back on track. Read more
November 24, 2009 As long weekend begins, police urge safe driving As Richmonders hit the road for the Thanksgiving holiday, Virginia police are pleading with motorists to keep vigilant. Last year during the Wednesday-Sunday span, 12 people died and 863 were injured in 1,407 accidents. The top three contributing factors were: following a vehicle in front too closely, failure to maintain control and not having the right-of-way. Read more
November 20, 2009 AAA Projects Thanksgiving Travel to Increase 3% in Virginia, 1.4% Nationally From Last Year
Fewer will Travel by Air this Year Due to Budget Concerns, Reduced Airline Capacity and Added Charges
RICHMOND, VA (FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2009) – AAA is projecting nationally 38.4 million Americans will be traveling 50 miles or more away from home over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend; a 1.4 percent increase over last year when 37.8 million traveled. In the Commonwealth about 1.5 million Virginians will be traveling 50 miles or more away from home, an increase of 3% over last year. Read more
November 18, 2009 Going to court
What happens after a drunk driving arrest EDITOR'S NOTE: The following story is part 2 in a three-part series on drunk driving. This week, we explore how the county’s legal system handles drunk driving arrests. Click here to read part 1 in the series about sobriety testing and how arrests are made.
In Chesterfield County, drunk driving cases rarely offer any of the gut-wrenching drama manufactured by screenwriters and acted out on Hollywood sound stages. The majority are resolved with guilty pleas before the accused even sees the inside of a courtroom.
Once every so often, though, a defendant decides to challenge a DUI charge, and the machinery that is the county’s criminal justice system cranks up again in anticipation of a trial in General District Court. Read more
November 13, 2009 Driving home campaign to teens
The SADD club at Chilhowie High School is again conducting a campaign to promote buckling up among teen drivers. The campaign by Students Against Destructive Decisions (formerly Students Against Drunk Driving) is called “Save Your Tail-Gate, Buckle Up.” Read more
November 11, 2009 Walking the line
What to expect if you’re stopped for driving drunk EDITOR'S NOTE: The following story is part 1 in a three-part series on drunk driving. This week, we explore how the county’s police department conducts sobriety checks and what happens to motorists suspected of driving under the influence.
If you’re a drunk driver in Chesterfield County, Officer First Class Gary Bailey is the last person you want to see.
Bailey annually makes more arrests for driving under the influence (DUI) than a majority of officers throughout the commonwealth. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) has honored him each of the last three years for his work on the front lines of the battle to keep impaired motorists off the streets.
“I think it’s extremely important to recognize officers’ efforts and know it is appreciated,” said Chris Konschak, executive director of MADD’s Virginia chapter. “A DUI arrest is one of the most complex arrests an officer can make. They’re going the extra mile, and we want them to know every time they take a drunk driver off the road, they’re potentially saving a life.” Read more
November 9, 2009 PROJECT M.E.A.R — Motor Enforcement, Accident Reduction CHESAPEAKE – Project M.E.A.R. kicks off today in the Hampton Roads Area and will continue throughout the week. Modeled and designed to enhance interstate enforcement efforts and the unique capabilities of police motorcycle units, project M.E.A.R. will provide widespread enforcement, increased driver compliance, and attempt to reduce accidents in several high-traffic Hampton Roads cities. Read more
November 8, 2009 Red-light cameras proving successful Motorists cruising through Virginia Beach seem to be getting the message: Stopping on red is more than a notion. That’s what police are saying, now that red-light cameras have been up and snapping for several months. The Beach’s PhotoSafe Program is doing exactly what it was designed to do: decrease red-light violations at several key intersections.
November 4, 2009 ‘Ghosted’ teens offer lessons
Danger, be it real or imagined, pervaded the impending weekend as Amherst County High School students glanced out of curiosity, sometimes chuckling but nonetheless paying attention to the words on the black T-shirts that some of their classmates wore.
The T-shirts read, in large white letters, “alcohol,” “seat belt” and “texting,” the stated reasons why each student wearing one had been “ghosted.”
It was the latest effort by the Amherst County Sheriff’s Office to make the point, not with a sense of urgency as much as with consistency. The sheriff’s office routinely targets underage drinking, drug use and dangerous behavior in an effort to prevent driving accidents. Read more
November 3, 2009 Fake IDs a real concern
Most bars are vigilant about checking identification cards to reduce underage drinking, and a new state-issued card is more tamper-proof.
Josh Stevens raised his eyebrows as he glanced at the ID. A girl had just given it to him one night to enter Sharkey's, the bar he manages in downtown Blacksburg.
The name on the card looked too familiar, and after eyeballing the photo and the girl in question several times, Stevens turned her away. He told her he was certain the ID wasn't hers. She asked how he knew.
"This ID belongs to my ex-girlfriend," said Stevens, 28.
October 30, 2009 Officers to keep streets safe on Halloween
As ghouls and goblins roam Lynchburg-area streets tonight, so will law enforcement officers looking to ensure the safety of trick-or-treaters, that Halloweens pranks don’t turn awry, and that intoxicated partiers stay off the streets.
Keep Your Halloween From Turning Into A Frightful Night — Don’t Drink And Drive RICHMOND – Since Halloween falls on a Saturday this year, Halloween partygoers will be out beginning their celebrations earlier that day or others may celebrate with additional festivities the previous night. This makes the Halloween weekend a potentially dangerous time on Virginia roads due to impaired drivers who fail to designate a sober driver.
Nationwide, more than 50 percent of fatalities in motor vehicle crashes on Halloween night in 2008 involved a driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Read more
October 27, 2009 Albemarle County Police Step Up Patrols After Fatal Accidents NBC29 — A string of fatal accidents have Albemarle County Police worried. Police are stepping up patrols on Route 29 south of Charlottesville. In the last week there have been two fatal crashes on the road, killing three people. None of the victims were wearing seat belts.
Police say out of the 10 people that have died on Albemarle highways this year, seven of them have been on that stretch of road.
Albemarle County Police Sergeant Peter Mainzer said, "It's a disturbing trend for us in law enforcement. And the message is clear - we need people to buckle up. We need people to slow down. We need people to driver responsibly, avoid distractions and avoid alcohol and drug use while driving."
Last year, 11 people were killed on Albemarle highways.
Next week a task force, including the Virginia Department of Transportation, will come together to look at what can be done to make Route 29 safer. LINK TO VIDEO
October 19, 2009 Saving Teen Drivers' Lives Begins at Home VSP Urges Families to Heed “National Teen Driver Safety Week” Message
RICHMOND – Virginia State Police are urging parents and teenagers to heed the lessons learned and messages associated with the 2009 National Teen Driver Safety Week (Oct. 19-24, 2009). Two new studies reveal that teen crashes and risky behaviors such as cell phone use, failure to wear seat belts, and drinking and driving are strongly linked with the ways teens and parents communicate and approach rules about safety. Read more
Last night, President Obama signed an Executive Order directing federal employees not to engage in text messaging while driving government-owned vehicles; when using electronic equipment supplied by the government while driving; or while driving privately owned vehicles when they’re on official government business. The order also encourages federal contractors and others doing business with the government to adopt and enforce their own policies banning texting while driving on the job. Read more
September 28, 2009 Va. among most-dangerous states for deer-car collisions
Virginia is one of the nation's 10 most-dangerous states for drivers colliding with deer, according to an insurance company study released today. One in every 137 drivers in Virginia is likely to hit a deer in the next 12 months, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. said. Read more
Distracted Driving Summit Offers Chance to Address Issue Comprehensively
Washington, D.C.—The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) will be among the many organizations represented at this week’s Distracted Driving Summit in the nation’s capital, September 30 and October 1. GHSA Chairman Vernon F. Betkey, Jr. will be joined by GHSA Executive Director Barbara Harsha as well as GHSA Members from Georgia, New Jersey, New York and Virginia. Read more
September 15, 2009
2,000 And Counting
Harrisonburg Fire Department Safety Expert Sets Child Car Seat Milestone
HARRISONBURG - Alicia Bale had a good reason to show up Monday for the Harrisonburg Fire Department's child safety seat inspection program. Actually, she had five. Bale, 33, of Weyers Cave, took her Dodge Grand Caravan to the fire station on Maryland Avenue to have an expert install car seats for her children who are still required to ride in safety seats. Cathy Stewart is one of those experts. On Monday, Stewart installed her 2,000th car seat since becoming certified to do so nearly two years ago. Read more
September 9, 2009 Thirteen People Killed on Virginia Roads During Labor Day Holiday
RICHMOND – Traffic fatalities increased during the 2009 Labor Day holiday compared to last year but fatalities overall are on the decline for the year. During the four-day statistical counting period, preliminary numbers reveal that thirteen individuals died in eleven traffic crashes. The victims range in age from two to 63 years of age. Last year, seven people were killed in traffic crashes compared to 22 lives that were lost during the 2007 Labor Day weekend.
The Henry County Sheriff’s Office, like many other localities, is stepping up patrols over the Labor Day weekend to keep motorists safe and traffic moving, according to sheriff’s Lt. R.V. Vaughn.
September 3, 2009 Border checkpoint nets 83 infractions
Authorities write 33 speeding violations
Virginia and North Carolina law enforcement ticketed motorists for 88 offenses Thursday during the 13th Border to Border checkpoint on U.S. Highway 17. Camden County Sheriff’s Major Jon Worthington said the 88 offenses included a fugitive sailor charged with absence without leave and a separate individual charged with possession with intent to sell and deliver marijuana after officials found two ounces of marijuana in his possession.
Officers out in full force ahead of holiday weekend
PRINCETON — Checking for driving under the influence and other violations started before the Labor Day rush Thursday as multiple law enforcement agencies conducted border to border traffic checks in Mercer, Tazewell, Giles, Bland and other counties of southern West Virginia and southwest Virginia.
Checkpoints held at Virginia's borders
CHESAPEAKE, Va. - Law enforcement officials say Labor Day weekend is one of the deadliest holidays on the road when it comes to impaired driving. Across the Commonwealth, police set up two dozen checkpoints to make sure drivers are safe and sober.
Officers teamed up with officials in North Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia for the thirteenth annual border-to-border checkpoint with the hope of establishing a message for holiday travelers.
September 2, 2009 Virginia Drunk Drivers: No One is Above the Consequences Statewide Initiative Decreases Alcohol-Related Fatalities
RICHMOND – In the heart of Richmond’s popular bar district, Shockoe Bottom, Virginia Attorney General William C. Mims joined law enforcement officers to kick off the Commonwealth’s 2009 Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign. As summer fun gives way to tailgates and frat parties, the anti-drunk driving initiative is back in action with stepped-up law enforcement activities, including sobriety checkpoints. Last year in Virginia, alcohol-related traffic fatalities were among the lowest in the past decade. Data issued by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles shows a six-percent decrease in the number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities from 378 in 2007 to 354 in 2008. However, 43-percent of Virginia’s total traffic fatalities remained alcohol-related last year. VIDEO
Governor Kaine Announces $17 Million in Highway Safety Grants
Decline in fatalities attributed to grant-funded programs RICHMOND–Governor Timothy M. Kaine today announced the award of more than $17 million in federal grants to support traffic safety programs in Virginia. Grant recipients include local, non-profit and state organizations that strive to reduce the number of traffic deaths and injuries on the Commonwealth's roadways. Read more
Virginia State Police Remind Motorists To Slow Down, Be Cautious And Drive Sober This Labor Day Weekend RICHMOND – As the summer driving season nears an end, Virginia State Police is reminding motorists to continue to make safe driving choices when they get behind the wheel to travel or to visit family and friends during Labor Day. The Commonwealth experienced a significant decline in traffic fatalities during the 2008 Labor Day holiday. Seven individuals died in seven traffic crashes, which was Virginia’s lowest Labor Day fatality count since 2001. This year, the four-day statistical counting period begins Friday, Sept. 4, 2009 at 12:01 a.m. until midnight Monday, Sept. 7, 2009.
Fewer Virginians Expected to Travel for Labor Day As Schools Are Back in Session
Projected Number of Travelers Down 15% – Yet Holiday will be Third Most Traveled this Decade RICHMOND, VA – AAA Mid-Atlantic projects that slightly over one million Virginians will take a trip of 50 miles or more away from home for the 2009 Labor Day Holiday, a decrease of 15 percent from 2008. The decrease, according to AAA, can be attributed primarily to the fact that Labor Day fell on September 1st last year allowing for a long weekend trip before a new school year started in most areas of the Commonwealth. This year, however, Labor Day is September 7th when the school year has already started for many children.
August 31, 2009 Checkpoints will make sure you buckle up and drive safely
From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, the eve of the Labor Day weekend, the Chesapeake Police Department and North Carolina law enforcement are teaming up to man Border to Border checkpoints locally for the 13th consecutive year, said Chesapeake police spokeswoman Dorienne M. Boykin.
Patrick County Sheriff's Deputies plan effort at border
The Patrick County Sheriff’s Office, Virginia State Police, N.C. Highway Patrol and Stokes County Sheriff’s Office will work together this year at the state lines, Stone said. N.C. 103 is the main crossing point between Surry and Patrick counties.
August 28, 2009 CarFit Event helps seniors be safer on the road
Last year, seniors were involved in nearly 16,000 vehicle crashes in Virginia, and 7 percent of those were fatal, according to a CarFit news release from AAA Tidewater Virginia. Thursday's event in Virginia Beach aimed to reduce those numbers.
August 26, 2009 A Safe Way to Drive and Text? One Man Hopes So
Matt Howard considers himself a member of "the American mobile society." A software entrepreneur who lives in Leesburg and depends on his Blackberry like a second brain, Matt last year almost became a member of the American mobile society who killed someone.
Getting Schooled in the ‘Art of Driving’
Robin Thompson’s educational program receives accolades.
Thompson founded the Art of Driving, an educational awareness program for teen drivers and parents, in memory of her daughter. She is striving to honor that memory by making an impact in her community. If the results from the Governor’s Transportation Safety Awards are any indication, then Thompson is well on her way to accomplishing her goals. Read more
Police on bikes making trails safer The sheriff’s offices of Amherst and Nelson counties have joined forces to help keep some local hiking and biking trails safer for outdoor enthusiasts. In July, members of the Amherst County Sheriff’s Office began using bikes to patrol lengths of the Blue Ridge Railway Trail that extend through Piney River and into both counties.
Sgt. Mark Hollandsworth of the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office and several other officers who are taking part in the two-week training course, which ends today, are part of the New River Valley Regional Crash Investigation Team. It includes officers from the sheriff's office and the Christiansburg, Blacksburg, Virginia Tech and Radford police departments. Read more
Seat belts are a trauma surgeon's passion
Talk to someone who works in a trauma service, like the one at Mary Washington Hospital, and you’ll probably find a passionate advocate for seatbelts. They see what can happen when you don’t use them.
Va. traffic fatalities fall 20 percent from 2007 to '08
When the number of people killed in crashes statewide reached 1,026 in 2007, law enforcement officials and state agencies vowed to do something about it. A Department of Motor Vehicles report released today shows their efforts might have made a difference.
The report shows a 20 percent decline in deaths in 2008, with 821 crash deaths across the state. The progress seems to have taken hold, said DMV spokeswoman Melanie Stokes. “The best part is that we’re seeing that decline continue in ’09 and that is very encouraging,” Stokes said. Read more
July 15, 2009 Henrico Police Sgt. A.J. Gordon Talks About Preventing Traffic Fatalities This Summer
July 14, 2009 Operation Air, Land & Speed Nets Third Highest Total Violations on Interstates 81 & 95
4,155 Speed Violations – 35 Drug/Felony Arrests – 12 DUI Arrests
RICHMOND – Operation Air, Land and Speed produced the third highest total violations since the traffic safety campaign began in 2006. The two-day enforcement blitz yielded 8,289 summonses and arrests along Interstate 81 and Interstate 95, which took place Friday, July 10, and Saturday, July 11, 2009.
July 9, 2009 Police Planning to Be Vigilant Against Texters While legislation passed by the General Assembly earlier this year makes texting in a moving vehicle illegal in most cases across Virginia, it is a “secondary offense,” meaning police can’t stop and ticket drivers simply for texting. Read more
July 6, 2009 15,800 Traffic Violations Cited By Virginia State Police During Independence Day Weekend
10 Reported Deaths Resulting from Holiday Traffic CrashesRICHMOND – The July 4 holiday weekend proved a busy one for Virginia State Police statewide. Of the 562 traffic crashes that state police responded to during the three-day statistical counting period, preliminary reports indicate that nine of the crashes resulted in 10 deaths. In 2008, 10 people were killed over a four-day holiday weekend.*
June 2, 2009 Texting While Driving is Unsafe and Unlawful After July 1
DUI Punishments Also Enhanced
RICHMOND - Virginians who send text messages or emails while driving after July 1 will be violating the law and will face a $20 fine. The new law banning texting and emailing passed by the General Assembly has several exceptions including emergency vehicle operators, drivers reporting an emergency or a driver who is parked. Other than making texting while driving against the law, the legislature also made the criteria stricter for requiring an ignition interlock device. Read more
May 26, 2009 Virginia Traffic Fatalities Dramatically Decline Over Memorial Day Weekend Overall fatalities for the year also down significantly Preliminary numbers indicate that traffic fatalities on Virginia highways for the 2009 Memorial Day weekend are the lowest in at least 10 years. As of noon May 26, 2009, five fatal crashes have been reported to the Virginia State Police. Last year, a total of 18 people died in 14 crashes during the same holiday period. The 2008 death toll was the highest since 1998. During the past decade, the Memorial Day weekend has averaged 12.8 traffic deaths.
May 22, 2009 Virginia State Police “C.A.R.E.” for Commonwealth's Highways This Memorial Day Weekend Stepped Up Patrols Statewide and Click It or Ticket Enforcement Over the Holiday Those traveling this holiday weekend can expect to see more Virginia State Police on the roadways statewide as part of the annual Operation C.A.R.E. traffic enforcement campaign. The Operation Combined Accident Reduction Effort (C.A.R.E.) is a state-sponsored, national program designed to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries caused by speeding, impaired driving and failure to use occupant restraints.
May 19, 2009 Operation Air, Land & Speed Yields 6,853 Violations and Arrests on Interstates 81 and 95 347 Drivers and Passengers Cited for Safety Belt Violations; Zero Traffic Fatalities
RICHMOND – Virginia State Police once again saturated the entire lengths of Interstates 81 and 95 during this year’s second Operation Air, Land and Speed initiative. From border-to-border, motorists traveling the two north-south interstate corridors witnessed an increased presence of Virginia State Police during the two-day traffic safety campaign.
May 14, 2009 Higher Seat Belt Use Could Save Many Lives, Study Shows as 'Click It or Ticket' National Enforcement Campaign Kicks Off
Research Kicks Off 'Click It or Ticket' Nationwide Enforcement Campaign Set To Run May 18-31 An estimated 1,652 lives could be saved and 22,372 serious injuries avoided each year if seat belt use rates rose to 90 percent in every state, according to a new report. The research, based on 2007 data, also estimates seat belts saved a stunning 15,147 lives that year.
“Wearing a seat belt costs nothing and yet it’s the single most effective traffic safety device ever invented,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. The study was released May 14 on the launch of the “Click It or Ticket” nationwide enforcement campaign (May 18-31).
May 13, 2009 Virginia Law Enforcement Buckling Down on Those Not Buckling Up
'Click It or Ticket' Mobilization to Help Save Lives Law enforcement will be supporting Click It or Ticket through a variety of methods during the two-week period. Officers will have zero tolerance for traffic law violators in an effort to get every driver and passenger to buckle up, day and night.
In Virginia, law enforcement can cite drivers of vehicles where occupants under age 16 are not wearing seat belts or are not properly restrained in a child safety seat. Drivers stopped for other violations can be cited if they are not buckled up.
May 11, 2009 Texting While Driving Remains 'Serious Issue,' Officials Say Driving while texting remains a "serious issue" on the nation's roadways, transportation officials said Monday, days after a Boston-area trolley operator failed to see a red light while reportedly sending his girlfriend a text message and smashed into the back of another trolley, injuring 50 people. For every two seconds a driver's eyes are off the road, a motorist is twice as likely to be involved in a crash, said Troy Green, national spokesman for AAA.
Maryland Gives Motorists "Bucks For Buckling Up"
State highway safety officials, along with Maryland State Police and other agencies, are handing out dollar bills to motorists they spot wearing their seat belts, which is required by law in Maryland.
The Maryland State Highway Administration Safety Office held a "Buckle Up for a Buck" event at a shopping center in Forestville in Prince George's County Monday. Another event is scheduled for Thursday in Montgomery County.
April 29, 2009 Ghost Out event raises car safety awareness at William Campbell High School A dark figure roamed the halls of William Campbell High School on Wednesday, and ghosts could be seen traveling the corridors. Cloaked in a long, slinky black robe with a white mask and hood, the grim reaper moved classroom by classroom to claim his victims. Rather than meeting their doom, his victims learned an important lesson — the dangers of driving while distracted.
April 27, 2009 Texting While Driving Increases Your Crash Risk Six Fold
Governor Kaine Declares April 29th Distracted Driving Awareness Day AAA Mid-Atlantic, DRIVE SMART Virginia, DMV: The Virginia Highway Safety Office, and the Virginia State Police call on Virginians to take action on April 29, 2009 for Distracted Driving Awareness Day and make a pledge to pay attention while driving. The day was created to raise awareness among drivers about the dangers of driving while distracted and to encourage drivers to change their driving behavior. Pledge to drive distraction free by visiting http://www.drivesmartva.org and clicking on the red ‘Don’t Drive Distracted’ box to the right.
“It only takes three seconds of a distraction to cause an accident,” Cundiff said. “I think people in general have forgotten that when they’re driving a vehicle, they need to remain focused on what they are doing.
New motorcycle safety course opened at Oceana
Because of a high number of motorcycle-related deaths among sailors, the Navy requires them to have training and to wear protective gear, even when they are not on duty or on a military base, officials said.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offers an online resource for teens and parents who want to make the right choice for prom or graduation night. A list of registered and insured limousine companies operating in Virginia is available on the DMV website, www.dmvNOW.com.
April 1, 2009 Blurred vision
Donning “fatal vision goggles,” Gaberial Janson cautiously maneuvered a golf cart around or-ange traffic cones Tuesday morning behind Culpeper County High School.
The 16-year-old sophomore’s blurred vision caused him to take out a few cones during the short obstacle course.
March 17, 2009 Students: Message from DUI Crash Victim Came in Loud and Clear BRISTOL, Va. – Sarah Panzau’s appearance Monday captured the attention of students at Virginia High School, but it was her emotional story that held many spellbound. Wearing a tight black tank top that clearly revealed her missing left arm and a multitude of scars from more than 30 surgeries, the 27-year-old talked about personal responsibility, consequences and making choices.
February 17, 2009 New Virginia Licenses, ID Cards Coming in March Virginians will soon have the safest, most secure driver’s licenses and ID cards in the U.S. In spring 2009, DMV will implement new secure driver’s licenses and ID cards and a new issuance process.
February 11, 2009 House backs texting-driving ban, death-penalty expansion
Moving quickly through a crowded calendar, the House of Delegates Tuesday voted to expand the death penalty and ban text messaging by drivers and advanced proposals for eight amendments to the Virginia Constitution.
Martinsville Police Department earns honor
The Martinsville Police Department was recognized for traffic safety accomplishments during Tuesday’s meeting of Martinsville City Council. The department was awarded Rookie of the Year and placed first in its division in the 2007 Virginia Law Enforcement Challenge.
February 9, 2009 Seat Belts DO save lives
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va - A slide show of pictures from devastating crashes in Virginia Beach played on a screen at the Law Enforcement Training Academy. The scenes were of collisions that destroyed property, but lives were spared. The Virginia Beach Police Department presented 13 "Saved by the Belt" awards Monday.
February 8, 2009 Virginia may tighten drunken driving laws
RICHMOND - Legislation moving through the General Assembly would increase the penalty for drunken-driving offenders who fail to use a device that prevents their cars from starting if their blood-alcohol content exceeds a certain level.
On Thursday, the Virginia Senate and the House of Delegates unanimously passed identical bills increasing the penalty for people who have been convicted of driving under the influence and then fail to use the device, called an ignition interlock.
February 5, 2009 Expanded seat-belt bill clears Senate
An expansion of the Virginia's mandatory seat-belt law cleared the state Senate Thursday afternoon, and is headed to a hostile House of Delegates.
Cutting Class May Mean Lost License
Public school students who quit showing up for classes could lose their driver's licenses under legislation making its way through the General Assembly. The House tentatively approved Del. William Fralin's bill 68-28 Thursday.
Danville Resident to Receive Traffic Safety Award On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, Danville Police Chief Philip Broadfoot along with representatives from the State of Virginia will present a Saved By The Belt Award to a Danville resident. The female resident was wearing her seat belt during a serious motor vehicle accident which occurred in the fall of 2008. The details of the crash and the recipient of the award will be announced on the date indicated above at the Danville Municipal Building in the second floor conference room at 1:30PM.
February 4, 2009 Pranks with electronic road signs stir worry
Latest breach came during morning rush hour near Collinsville, Illinois. Similar pranks have been pulled in recent days near Indianapolis and in Austin, Texas.
February 3, 2009 Cash-strapped states mull seat belt law changes
More than a dozen states that are considering making the switch to primary seat-belt enforcement laws need to do so before July to be eligible for millions in federal money.
February 2, 2009 Henrico traffic stops ends with police chase
State police say a "routine traffic stop" in eastern Henrico ended with a pursuit on Interstate 64 near Nine Mile and Airport roads. Steven Thomas Banks, 34, was taken to Henrico County Jail and is now facing multiple charges including obstruction of justice, possession of marijuana, DUI and a felony charge of alluding police. Read more
January 29, 2009 Fairfax City gives green light to red light cameras
The City of Fairfax has set itself up to possibly become the first Virginia municipality to re-establish a red-light camera program since the 2007 state legislature allowed the controversial procedure to be used again in the commonwealth. Read more
January 28, 2009 Study: Danville safer than county
“The basic difference between Danville and Pittsylvania County is the same as elsewhere in the state,” he said from his Charlottesville office. “There are far more traffic fatalities (in the county) than homicides (in the city).” Read more
January 23, 2009 Cell-phone proposal clears Senate panel
A bill that would prohibit motorists from using cell phones that do not have hands-free accessories while driving cleared the Senate Transportation Committee yesterday. The committee, however, narrowly rejected another motor-vehicle safety bill (SB 970) that would allow police to pull over vehicles when the driver or front seat passengers are not using safety belts. Read more
January 13, 2009
Botetourt County woman awarded ‘Saved by the Belt’ award
On July 3, 2008, Rachel Correll was involved in a horrific car crash on U.S. 460 at the intersection of Ole Turnpike Road in the city of Bedford. Another vehicle cut in front of her and caused her SUV to overturn several times and land upside down in the road’s median. Police believe Correll’s decision to buckle her seat belt saved her life.
January 11, 2009 Staunton police lead in DUI arrests
STAUNTON — After nabbing 121 motorists driving under the influence in 2006, Staunton police saw that number climb steeply the following year to 183. In 2008, that number was set to go even higher, but then something happened — DUI arrests in the fourth quarter saw a sharp decline in the city, with just 18 drivers arrested for drinking and driving. That left 2008 with a slight decrease of nine DUI arrests, most of them alcohol-related, topping out at 174.
January 10, 2009 Fredericksburg-area traffic fatalities down in 2008
Spotsylvania's marked drop is partly because of additional funding and enforcement, said Spotsylvania Sheriff Howard Smith. Before 2008, the department had eight full-time deputies doing traffic enforcement. Now, the county Sheriff's Office has 13 full-time deputies enforcing traffic laws.
January 6, 2009 6-year-old misses school, takes car, wrecks it
WICOMICO CHURCH (Va.) -- A 6-year-old boy allegedly was so upset at missing the school bus that he took the family's car and tried to drive to class before crashing the vehicle.
December 29, 2008 Fewer killed on roads in 2008, AAA says
Fewer travelers at the wheel appears to be the main reason for this year’s marked decline in traffic deaths on Virginia and Tennessee roads, according to the American Automobile Association and state data.
December 2, 2008 Harrisonburg Officials: Teens Can Drive Safely
Local police officials and drivers education instructors say that if teens and parents follow a few simple safety measures, the chances of young people staying safe behind the wheel will increase greatly.
Traffic stops in question
Two men arrested at driver checkpoints by Floyd County sheriff’s deputies in December 2007 are challenging the legality of the road blocks, saying the department did not follow its own written procedures.
November 19, 2008 Driving ‘Drunk' Made Easy Harrisonburg Police, Kawneer Team Up To Give Safe Glimpse Of Deadly Practice
Driving one of the Harrisonburg Police Department's new golf carts, Zach Gray weaved through the obstacle course set up on the Kawneer company's parking lot on Deyerle Road Tuesday. The Kawneer employee hit only a few of the bright-orange cones, and that wasn't bad, considering he was wearing goggles that made him view the course as if he were drunk.
November 12, 2008 Stricter car seat law may be saving lives
Middletown — Seven-year-old Jarret Hicks thinks his car booster seat is comfortable. In fact, he wouldn’t mind riding in it until he’s 14. “But when we get older, our butts won’t fit,” said Jarret, a Frederick County resident.
November 11, 2008 New Study Links Florida Senior Eye Tests To Safer Roads
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- A University of Alabama at Birmingham study showed highway traffic deaths for older drivers in Florida dropped 17 percent after the state passed a law requiring vision tests for people age 80 and older. In Georgia and Alabama, where such tests are not required, the death rates remained unchanged.
November 9, 2008 Auto-deer collisions typically increase in November
Statistics provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and State Farm Insurance indicate Virginia annually is ranked among the country's top 10 for deer-automobile collisions.
Study: Traffic accidents spike on Election Day
Could voting for president be hazardous to your health? An analysis of Election Day traffic deaths dating back to Jimmy Carter's 1976 win suggests yes, but the authors say that's no reason not to go to the polls.
July 26, 2008 Motorcycle deaths in Virginia at lowest level since 2005
Virginia motorcycle fatalities spiked last year to the highest level in at least a decade, prompting public awareness campaigns, stepped-up enforcement initiatives and a declaration by the governor that May 2008 would be "Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month." The efforts seem to be paying off. More...
July 24, 2008 Operation Air, Land & Speed Enforcement Initiative Coming to Hampton Roads July 25-26, 2008
Traffic Safety Effort to Target Interstates 64, 264, 464 & 664
RICHMOND – This Friday, July 25, and Saturday, July 26, motorists traveling Interstate 64 and the interstates within Hampton Roads will see an increased presence of Virginia State Police. The Department is launching another Operation Air, Land, and Speed traffic safety initiative to remind people of the need to slow down, buckle up, and drive safely and responsibly on Virginia’s interstates. More...
July 22, 2008 High Gas Prices Drive Down Traffic Deaths, Study Suggests
WASHINGTON -- As much as it hurts many drivers to fill up becuase of high gas prices, it turns out there may actually be an upside to the pain at the pump. According to the National Safety Council, as gas prices have risen this year, the number of traffic-related deaths has decreased.
June 16, 2008 Fourth Trooper in Three Months Struck & Injured by Passing Motorist on Virginia Interstate
ROCKBRIDGE CO., Va. – For the fourth time in three consecutive months, a Virginia State Police trooper has been rushed to a hospital after being struck and injured by a passing motorist. Trooper P.C. Gardner, assigned to the Virginia State Police Salem Division, is currently recuperating from injuries sustained in a crash this morning (June 16) on Interstate 81 in Rockbridge County.
Scooting past sky-high gas prices
Motorcycle dealers in the Roanoke Valley say the rise in gas prices has driven a steadily increasing stream of folks into their shops.
May 1, 2008 'Click it' success nets $5 million for W.Va.
In 1993, West Virginia became one of the last states to mandate wearing seat belts. Drivers still can't be stopped just for not wearing their seat belts. Despite that, more drivers buckle up in West Virginia than in just about any other state, federal officials said Wednesday.
The designation gives West Virginia a $5 million federal grant, which the state plans to use to help pay for laptop computers in police cars.
West Virginia had to have at least an 85 percent seat-belt usage for two consecutive years to qualify for the U.S. Department of Transportation grant. The state achieved an 88.5 percent rating in 2006 and 89.5 percent in 2007.
April 3, 2008 State police plan triple force on I-95
Troopers will be conducting "saturation" patrols in the so-called Highway Safety Corridor to promote traffic safety through stringent enforcement and increased visibility in an area that has a high volume of traffic and numerous interchanges.
April 2, 2008 Seat belts protect unborn babies: study
The University of Michigan researchers estimated that based on their findings, published on Wednesday, the lives of 200 of the roughly 370 fetuses killed yearly in U.S. vehicle crashes would be spared if all pregnant women wore seat belts.
March 7, 2008 Stricter Penalties Approved for Teen Drinking, Driving The legislature voted this week to impose stiffer fines or more community service on underage drivers who drink, even if their blood alcohol level is below the legal limit. The measure also doubles, to one year, the amount of time a teen driver's license would be suspended.
March 5, 2008 Crashes cost D.C. region $5 billion yearly
Traffic accidents cost the Washington area more than $5 billion a year in property damage, medical costs, travel delays and lost productivity, according to a report released today by AAA. That's $970 per person, the travel association said.
March 4, 2008 Study outlines risks for kids riding with teens
Car crashes are the leading cause of death for tweens and teens, and a new study outlines some of the most dangerous circumstances: Riding unbuckled with new teen drivers on high-speed roads. These were the three biggest risk factors contributing to car crash deaths for passengers aged 8 to 17, the study found.
January 27, 2008 Child safety seat rides to life-saving milestone
Child safety in the car used to be standing up next to Daddy in the front seat and counting on him to thrust his arm out quickly to keep you from going through the windshield. It’s been 30 years this month, however, since the first child safety seat law went into effect in Tennessee and changed the concept of child safety in the car forever.
January 23, 2008 Lynchburg woman given seat belt award whose life saved by one
Ashley Foster remembers the moment when the world stopped spinning and her Ford Expedition landed on its wheels after careening 75 feet down an embankment. Her head hurt. Glass was everywhere. The airbags in the car had inflated - all but hers. But she was still in the car, held tight by the seat belt that very possibly saved her life.
January 17, 2008 Tougher seatbelt law passes Virginia Senate committee
The Senate Transportation Committee on Thursday approved, 8-4, a bill sponsored by Sen. Patricia Ticer, D-Alexandria, that would make the violation of the state's seat belt law a primary offense, meaning an officer could stop and ticket you solely for not buckling up. The proposal, SB649, came weeks after the deadliest year on Virginia roads since 1981. Virginia State Police announced earlier this month that 1,012 people were killed in traffic wrecks in 2007.
January 11, 2008 'Meanest Mom' Sells Son's Car, Family Gets Quite a Ride "OLDS 1999 Intrigue. Totally uncool parents who obviously don't love teenage son, selling his car. Only driven for three weeks before snoopy mom who needs to get a life found booze under front seat. $3,700/offer. Call meanest mom on the planet."
January 4, 2008 Abusive-driver fees under fire
Lt. Governor calls for full repeal On Thursday, William T. "Bill" Bolling mailed a letter to Republican members and members-elect of the General Assembly outlining his proposal. In the letter, Bolling says the "repeal or revision of the abusive driver fee legislation that was enacted by the General Assembly last year" is "one of the important issues we will consider this year."
December 28, 2007 Grim milestone of 1,000 killed in '07 on Va. highways is near Virginians may awake Friday morning to the 1,000th traffic fatality of the year, a milestone in highway mayhem not reached since 1990. As of Thursday evening, Virginia's law enforcement agencies had recorded 997 fatalities despite public pleas for motorists to slow down, drive sober and wear seat belts.
December 17, 2007 Celebrate the Season with Your Loved Ones This Holiday Season — Drive Safe & Sober Dec. 21-23, 2007 – Operation CARE/Holiday Lifesaver Weekend Within the past two weeks, at least 35 individuals have died in 33 traffic crashes across the Commonwealth. Of the 35 people killed from December 1-17, 2007, five were motorcyclists and another four were pedestrians who were struck and killed by a vehicle. Of the remaining 26 fatalities, 14 drivers and passengers were not buckled up. Of all 33 traffic crashes, eight were alcohol-related. Read more...
December 6, 2007 Study Questions Va. Driver Fees, Raising the Possibility of Repeal
State auditors found that they have not affected traffic safety and might not raise as much money as expected. The report describes confusion over which offenses can trigger the fees and indicates that some police officers are choosing not to write tickets for violations that carry the fees
Va. may face tougher seatbelt laws
National statistics show fewer people die in car crashes in states that have stronger seat belt enforcement laws. Now, some believe Virginia should tighten theirs. From January to October this year, police records show 380 out of 810 people killed in traffic crashes were not wearing their seatbelt.
November 29, 2007 Child Seat Safety Made Easy AAA Mid-Atlantic and Safe Kids Virginia partnered together with Prince George Safe Kids, Virginia Department of Health and the Fort Lee Police to offer free car seat safety checks at the Babies Us on Rittenhouse Road in Midlothian on Wednesday, Nov. 21.
Driving Home Safety Thirty-seven people lost their lives on Fairfax County roads during the first 10 months of 2007 and 10 of those victims — 27 percent — were under 21 years old.
Illegal immigrant to serve 24 years then face deportation
Alfredo Ramos pleaded guilty on August 13 to two counts of aggravated involuntary manslaughter. Alison Kunhardt, 17, and Tessa Tranchant, 16, were killed March 30 when their car was struck from behind by a vehicle driven by Ramos while sitting at a stoplight at Virginia Beach Boulevard and Kings Grant Road.
November 17, 2007 Bedford City officer recounts being hit by truck
As many of us head to the highways for the holidays, law enforcement is renewing its emphasis on a state law adopted in 2002 that requires motorists to safely move into the next lane. If the driver is not able to do so, they are required to slow down and proceed with caution or face a steep fine.
November 16, 2007 Campaign asks; Are you Virginia's next traffic fatality? With the busy Thanksgiving travel season upon us, state police want to keep fatalities to a minimum, and are asking for your help. The number of deadly crashes is on the rise, and police worry the holidays could bring even more tragedy to the highways.
Drive Smart Va. announces Thanksgiving "Click It or Ticket"
As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, let’s think about more than parades, turkey and football. With more motorists expected to travel during this holiday than any other throughout the year, drivers need to think about making sure their love ones are buckled up properly in safety belts and approved child restraints.
Seatbelt crackdown planned for Prince William
Prince William County Police will join law enforcement agencies throughout Virginia in the "Click It or Ticket" mobilization to enforce the Commonwealth's safety belt and child safety seat laws.
November 8, 2007 Motorcycle deaths on the rise in Virginia
Motorcycle crashes and subsequent fatalities are on the rise in Virginia. According to a news release from the DMV, Virginia has seen an 87% increase in motorbike fatalities compared to this time last year.
November 7, 2007 Police on motorcycles hit the interstates this week It's not your imagination. There really are police on motorcycles all over the interstates this week. Since Monday, at least 35 state troopers, sheriff's deputies and police officers on motorcycles have been patrolling Hampton Roads highways in an enforcement campaign called Motor Enforcement Accident Reduction or MEAR.
November 4, 2007 How to ... avoid hitting a deer Drivers, take caution. Deer season is upon us. Deer-vehicle collisions can occur any time of the year, but the numbers are especially high during the fall months. Nationwide, these collisions result in 150 deaths, tens of thousands of injuries and more than $1 billion in vehicle damage a year.
November 2, 2007 Drowsy driving is big killer in U.S.
Drowsy driving kills more than 1,550 people a year in the United States and causes 71,000 injuries, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which estimates there are 100,000 sleep-related crashes a year.
November 1, 2007 NTSB SAFETY ALERT: Nation Stuck in 'Decade-Long' Plateau of Drunk Driving Deaths In 2006, 17,602 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes. NTSB Chair Mark Rosenker said that "hard core drinking drivers" — those who drive with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.15 percent or greater, or who are arrested for driving while impaired within 10 years of a prior DWI arrest — are involved in about 54 percent of those fatal crashes.
October 24, 2007 Virginia wrecks are fatal to eight
A Staunton teenager, Brittney B. Inglemen, 18, died yesterday after she was ejected from a car during a crash in Augusta County. Inglemen, who was not wearing a seat belt, died at the scene. State police also reported seven other road fatalities, bringing Virginia's 2007 highway death toll to 821 yesterday, compared with 764 at the same time last year.
October 10, 2007 Put the Brakes on Fatalities The month of October is among the peak months for traffic fatalities in Virginia and the nation. In 2005, more people were injured and more people were killed in the month of October than in any other month that year. In 2006, October led the year for having the most total traffic crashes and the most traffic crash injuries.
October 9, 2007 GM OnStar System Could Halt Stolen Cars Starting with about 20 models for 2009, the service will be able to slowly halt a car that is reported stolen, and the radio may even speak up and tell the thief to pull over because police are watching.
October 3, 2007 Seat belt safety "Nationally, we have about 43 thousand fatalities a year and the big piece of the pie is seat belt usage and trying to get people to wear seat belts more often" according to Stefan Duma, a researcher at Virginia Tech who works at the Center for Injury Biomechanics.
Deadly Roads More than 9,000 people have died on a Virginia road in the past ten years and over 700,000 have been injured. That’s three and a half times the number of people that live in Albemarle, Greene, Fluvanna, Orange, and Madison counties.
June 10, 2007 Deadliest stretch
Two recent fatal wrecks on Interstate 95 killed six people in Richmond and Prince George County, underscoring the highway's reputation as Virginia's deadliest interstate.
Police: ‘Buckle Up, Or Else’
On Tuesday, the first heavy enforcement day of the annual seat belt campaign, local police issued 226 tickets and dozens of warnings for a variety of violations, according to data from the Rockingham County Sheriff’s Office.
May 15, 2007 Click It or Ticket
This weekend wear your seatbelt. Beginning on May 25, the Rappahannock County Sheriff's Office will participate in a multi-jurisdictional enforcement project, targeting the Route 211 corridor from Timberville to Warrenton.
May 12, 2007 Click It Or Ticket Program Campaign This Month Be sure to buckle up. Virginia, North Carolina and Hampton Roads law enforcement agencies will be participating in the National Click It or Ticket campaign during the month of May.
May 10, 2007 Military and Civilian Traffic Safety Groups Meet
Representatives from the Naval Safety Center, various commands in the Norfolk area, and civilian groups met on May 3 to discuss local traffic safety issues. The groups attending the meeting included Virginia’s Checkpoint Strikeforce, Drive Smart Virginia, Virginia Highway Safety Office, Naval Station Norfolk Brig, Naval Safety Center, Fleet Forces Command, Portsmouth Naval Hospital and base police officers and safety personnel from Norfolk, Little Creek and Oceana.
Cameras free police to patrol other crimes
Chesapeake police officers have been forced into a low-tech, cat-and-mouse game with motorists who run red lights, staking out intersections in the hopes of catching somebody
December 30, 2006 Area road deaths decline in 2006
Based on statistics provided by local law enforcement agencies, 22 people died this year on area roads — which include Staunton, Waynesboro and Augusta County — compared with 26 last year.
November 9, 2006 Distractions add to traffic dangers
Cedar Bluff Police Chief says there were indications that cell phone use may have contributed to the crash that killed 24-year old Joseph Vencill and led to the death a day later of four-month old Laken Vance.
Taps Peters for Transportation
President Bush on Tuesday picked Mary Peters to be the nation's new transportation
secretary, a Cabinet position that took on more prominence after the Sept. 11
August 23, 2006 Traffic
Already this year, Virginia has seen more motorcycle accidents
than any other year prior — early half the riders were not
wearing helmets — and statistics show more than half
of passengers killed in car accidents were not wearing seat
16, 2006 Campaign
Hopes to Reduce DUIs
The new campaign -- "Drunk Driving. Over the Limit.
Under Arrest." -- will include TV, radio and online
ads in English and Spanish. They will primarily target male
drivers ages 21 to 34, the segment of the population most
likely to get behind the wheel drunk.
VDOT Studying Optical Illusions To Slow Speeders
New pavement markings being tested by the Virginia Department
of Transportation have been proven to make some motorists
think they're going faster than they really are - and in
turn, drivers have let up off the accelerator.
June 27, 2006 Motorcycle riders get a safety lesson
Had the Pittsburgh Steelers’ star quarterback been riding
his motorcycle in Virginia, he would have been wearing a helmet
- and his injuries would undoubtedly have been far less severe.
Law targets underage drinking
A new law aims to close a loophole
that allows underage drinkers to consume alcohol in private
homes across Virginia.
May 23, 2006 Click
It or Ticket With a grant from the Department of Motor Vehicles,
the Augusta County Sheriff's office and surrounding localities
increased their patrols on the road Monday as part of the
national Click It or Ticket campaign.
May 19, 2006 Sheriff's Office stepping up efforts
Buckle up, Culpeper. The Culpeper County Sheriff’s
Office is joining more than 12,000 state and local law enforcement
agencies for an aggressive national “Click It or Ticket” mobilization
set to begin May 22.
Click it or get a ticket
Local police warn motorists that they are stepping up enforcement
now through Memorial Day weekend to enforce safety belt laws.
Berryville Police, the Clarke County Sheriff’s Department,
and Virginia State Police are joining other law enforcement
agencies across the state in the “Click it or Ticket” program
to enforce the commonwealth’s safety belt and child
safety seat laws.
March 29, 2006 Hold
on to your wallet - driving costs hit 52 cents a mile
The folks at the AAA issued the results of their annual "Your
Driving Costs" study Tuesday, and the bottom line isn't
pretty - the overall average cost of owning and operating
your late model ride in the U.S. is about 52.2 cents per
mile, or $7,834 per year, if you drive 15,000 miles.
Program aims to curb pedestrian accidents
Local officials, worried about an increase in traffic fatalities,
yesterday kicked off the annual Street Smart campaign to
urge pedestrians to use sidewalks and crosswalks and to obey
November 27, 2005 Carpooling
increases with gas prices
Jenny Hill remembers how in high school she wanted more than anything to drive
her own car to school rather than take the school bus. Now she and coworkers
in her vanpool joke about how their lives have come full circle when it comes
to their preferred mode of transportation.
The parents of a student killed in a car accident during the busy Thanksgiving
weekend traffic work to promote driver safety.
November 19, 2005 Transportation
task force tries to chart course Lawmakers and Gov.-elect Tim Kaine have identified
transportation as the top priority for the upcoming General
Assembly session but note a shortfall of $108 billion over
the next 20 years.
November 15, 2005 Knights
in DayGlo armor keep roads clear
The new service is part of a VDOT strategy to help motorists move more smoothly
on local interstates. That involves everything from clearing away road debris
and stalled vehicles to helping State Police control traffic during accident
sure seat is safe
It’s an all too common sight on Maui roadways, small children’s
lives put at risk because of neglect or ignorance on the part of adults.
November 8, 2005 Child
passenger safety class ’eye-opening’
Bob Wall was a police traffic officer in Fairfax, Va., when he began noticing
that many children were being injured in minor traffic collisions because they
weren’t properly secured in car seats
September 28, 2005 An
encouraging sign for student drivers
Bedford County high school students have begun checking up on one another.
The cause could not be a better one... They are checking to see that classmates
are buckling up their seat belts.
September 24, 2005 Buckle
up for safety, and to party
A Bedford County Sheriff’s Deputy and two classmates, pen and papers
in hand, greeted students as they drove away from Staunton River High School
at the end of the day Wednesday. The reason? To make sure students are buckled
May 12, 2005 Time
to "Click It or Ticket"
NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) - The Naval Safety Center has partnered once again with
the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on their national "Click
It or Ticket" campaign.
June 1, 2004 NHTSA Repeats Rollover Warning to Users of 15-Passenger Vans
The U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) today re-issued a warning to users of 15-passenger vans because of an increased rollover risk under certain conditions. Similar warnings were issued in 2001 and 2002.
May 22, 2004 State should ban DVDs for drivers
As if drivers distracted by cell-phone calls, mascara application, newspaper reading or munching on an Egg McMuffin at 70 mph aren't bad enough, now comes a new motorist diversion: the driver's-side DVD player.
May 4, 2004 Rescue Workers Prepare For Challenges of Hybrid Car Accidents
The growing popularity of hybrid vehicles is a step toward cleaner air and less dependance on gasoline. But for rescuers at accident scenes, they represent a potential new danger: a network of high-voltage circuitry that may require some precise cutting to save a trapped victim.
January 12, 2004 State's first safety zone set on I-81
Virginia's first safety-enforcement zone, where traffic violations will cost dangerous drivers higher penalties, will go into effect this week on Interstate 81 in western Virginia.
November 5, 2003 Traffic signal changes cause concern MINNEAPOLIS—It's every motorist's fantasy to be able to make a red traffic light turn green without so much as easing off the accelerator. That naughty dream may now be coming true, with perilous implications.
November 4, 2003 Seat belt use slipping among youth
Despite efforts to get every driver to buckle up, people are not heeding the warnings – with disastrous results. Traffic safety officials worry younger people "who think they are immortal" are forgetting to wear seat belts.
26, 2003 Study:
Traffic tickets can reduce fatal car crashes It's never pleasant receiving a traffic
ticket but new research from scientists in Canada shows
they could reduce fatal car crashes. "You don't
think the police are doing a public service when they
issues tickets, but traffic enforcement has a huge
public health benefit,"...
24, 2003 Virginia,
nation see rebound in drunk-driving deaths
Andrew Campbell wanted the new Harry
Potter book for his ninth birthday. His parents, Leigh
and Anthony Darryl Campbell, were not about to say no.
The family piled in the car Friday night and drove north
from their home on the Eastern Shore to Maryland, where
the book would go on sale at midnight. They never made
cars, smart roads can help out dumb drivers
A car speeds toward
an intersection, about to collide with a van. Sensors spot
the car about to run the red light, and a signal rushes to
the car, triggering a high-pitched beep and a red light on
the dashboard that says, emphatically, "STOP".