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News and updates from Smart, Safe & Sober about upcoming mobilizations, training opportunities, law enforcement agency initiatives, and more!

Happy New Year 2013
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

Happy New Year!

2013 to be a year of changes

by Erin Schrad, Editor & VACP Communications Manager

Well, we made it... January 1, 2013.  The 21st century is officially a teenager — no Mayan doomsday, no zombie apocalypse, no alien invasion... and it seems we may even avoid a plummet off the fiscal cliff!  (Guess I'll have to do those fall quarter timesheets afterall!)

Nevertheless, things ARE changing.  One thing you may have noticed is that your 2012 Smart, Safe & Sober Calendar (aka the "Patch Calendar") has run out without a new 2013 Calendar to replace it!  Well, the Highway Safety Office requested the creation of a digital version of the calendar for 2013 in lieu of the printed version, and it can be accessed at www.smartsafeandsober.org/calendar.

The online calendar is a Google calendar that you should be able to easily import or link into your computer calendar program (Outlook, iCal, etc) and also be able to have displayed on your smartphone. The events on the calendar are populated with links that take you to additional information about that particular mobilization or training opportunity so that you can prepare your education and enforcement activities or register for the training/conference quickly and easily.  As new events and training opportunities come up throughout the year, we will be adding them to this calendar so that you always have current information at your fingertips.

We know the printed calendar was well-used and anticipated each year by many of you, but our hope is that this new online version will prove just as useful.  We would appreciate any feedback on this change in format though. Let us know if you like the change or if you preferred the printed version and would like to see us bring it back if at all possible. Send me an email at erin@vachiefs.org to share your thoughts!

Keeping with the theme of moving from print to digital, those of you preparing to enter the 2012 Law Enforcement Challenge Awards program this spring will be faced with a new online submission process. The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), which runs the National Challenge program, has been working hard to develop this new online system to address the rising costs associated with judging the hundreds of entries received from agencies across the country.  It's very expensive to have judges travel in to Alexandria for a week to evaluate all of the entries, so having an online system means judges can evaluate entries from their hometowns.

Additionally, concerns had been expressed by entrants about the time and money it costs an agency to enter the Challenge each year. The online submission process will hopefully remove some of the barriers to entry and allow more agencies to participate.  We have decided in Virginia to follow suit with the National program and not request that a printed copy of the application be submitted.  Instead, we will have our state judges access the online system to review entries from Virginia agencies.  This means there is ONE DEADLINE — the National Challenge deadline — and there will be NO EXTENSION.  I'm not kidding.  The deadline is 11:59 pm on May 1, 2013. After that, I can't help you!

There is a quick guide to the online submission process on the Smart, Safe & Sober web site page about the Challenge application, but we are working to schedule some workshops soon to provide you with some in-person help, so stay tuned! Also, if you are a current or former law enforcement officer and you are interested in being a judge for the Law Enforcement Challenge, send me an email!

And that leads me to a quick note about the Saved by the Belt & Bag Awards program. Due to staffing changes at the Highway Safety Office, the management of this program is being returned to the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police. We haven't worked out all of the logistics yet (we just received a stack of award nomination forms that all need to be evaluated), but we look forward to getting this program back in gear. We know many of you have been concerned about your pending nominations because of their tie-in with the Law Enforcement Challenge program and we hope to be able to present some of these in time for inclusion in your 2012 applications.  (As your state coordinator, I would argue anything you submitted in 2012 is fair game even if the awards weren't actually presented before Dec. 31. You did YOUR part on time!)

If you are concerned about a pending application or have any questions about the program, please contact me at erin@vachiefs.org or (804) 285-8227 or (804) 512-5162 (cell).

And last but not least, those staffing changes at the Highway Safety Office I just mentioned! Last year ended with the arrival of a new Deputy Director in the office, Dr. Lori Rice, and the departure of two longtime colleagues, Mary Ann Rayment and Steve Goodwin.

While we welcome Dr. Rice and are looking forward to her leadership, we will certainly miss Mary Ann and Steve. They have been championing the cause of highway safety in Virginia for as long as I can remember and it will be very strange to not have one of them at the next training or meeting or checkpoint or safety event... and especially strange to not have their names making a regular appearance in my email inbox! They leave some very big shoes to fill, but we wish them well in their new endeavors — a new job for Mary Ann and a well-earned retirement for Steve. Farewell and Godspeed!

 

The loss of one of our own

2012 ends on a sad note with the loss of Prince William County Police Officer Chris Yung.  Officer Yung, 35, passed away on December 31st from injuries sustained in a crash that he was involved in Monday afternoon while responding to a separate crash in the county. Yung had been with the department for 7 years and was assigned to the Traffic Unit as a motorcycle officer.

A preliminary investigation revealed that the driver of a mini-van was making a left hand turn from northbound Nokesville Road into the shopping center crossing in front of Officer Yung who was traveling southbound on Nokesville Road. Officer Yung was transported to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead. No other injuries were reported. The crash investigation is continuing.
 
Acting Chief Barnard asks for the public’s thoughts and prayers as the department copes with the loss of a colleague and friend.

The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police requests that all Virginia law enforcement shroud their badges in honor of Officer Yung through the day of his funeral.

Additional information on memorial services will be posted on the VACP web site as it becomes available.

 

Super Bowl Sunday Drunk Driving Prevention Campaign 

February 3, 2013

Click here for the Super Bowl Sunday "Fans Don't Let Fans Drive Drunk" campaign toolkit!
 



St. Patrick's Day Campaign

St. Patrick's Day Drunk Driving Prevention & Enforcement Campaigns

Mar 17, 2013 

These marketing tools can be used to fit your needs and objectives while, at the same time, partnering with other States, communities, and organizations on this drunk driving prevention initiative. They are based on the two basic principles that, on Saint Patrick's Day:

 Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over (enforcement), and

 Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving (social norming)


Upcoming Trainings & Campaigns

 
Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Jan 9 – 11, 2013
Richmond, VA

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Jan 28 – 30, 2013
Richmond, VA

Data-Driven Approaches to Crime & Traffic Safety (DDACTS) Training
Jan 29 – 31, 2013
Roanoke County CJ Training Academy

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Jan 30 – Feb 1, 2013
Richmond, VA

DMV Grant Quarterly Reports Due
Jan 31, 2013

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Feb 4 – 6, 2013
Richmond, VA

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Feb 6 – 8, 2013
Richmond, VA

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Feb 20 – 22, 2013
Richmond, VA

Advanced DUI Training for Investigators and Prosecutors
Feb 20 – 22, 2013
Williamsburg, VA

VACP 2013 Midyear Conference
Feb 25 – 26, 2013
Staunton, Virginia

VCU/TSTC Fundamentals of Crash Investigation Training
Mar 11 – 15, 2013
Bristol, VA

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Mar 18 – 20, 2013
Richmond, VA

Va. DFS Breath Alcohol Basic Class
Mar 20 – 22, 2013
Richmond, VA

 
More Events


 

Welcome Dr. Lori Rice to the Highway Safety Office!

Lori G. Rice, Ph.D. has been named the Deputy Director of Programs for the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles Highway Safety Office. 

In 2006, Virginia Commonwealth University named Dr. Rice to lead the university’s multi-disciplinary crash investigation team. She had served as team leader and psychologist at the VCU Transportation Safety Training Center. The Transportation Safety Training Center was formed in 1971 as a joint venture between the Virginia Highway Safety Division and VCU’s School of Community and Public Affairs. Today, the training center is a division of VCU's Center for Public Policy in the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs.

Rice has been a psychological consultant in the Richmond area for the past 20 years. She worked part time as a psychologist with the Transportation Safety Training Center and has co-authored more than two dozen publications and papers focusing on a variety of traffic safety topics.

Rice received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Virginia Tech in 1977. She received a master’s degree in general and experimental psychology at VCU in 1979 and a Ph.D. in general and experimental psychology at VCU in 1981.

Lori G. Rice, Ph.D.
Deputy Director, Programs
Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles 
Highway Safety Office 
2300 West Broad Street 
Richmond, VA 23220-0999 
Office: (804) 367-1143
Fax: (804) 367-6031 
Lori.Rice@dmv.virginia.gov

 

 

A Fond Farewell to the "Seatbelt Queen"

After nearly nineteen years with the Virginia Highway Safety Office, Mary Ann Rayment leaves us to share her knowledge and enthusiasm for highway safety with the rest of the country. On December 3rd, she became a Traffic Safety Specialist-Instructor with the Transportation Safety Institute (TSI) in Oklahoma City, the training arm of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Mary Ann has been assigned to Occupant Protection Management (surprise, surprise!) as well as Data Analysis and Evaluation, Highway Safety Program Management, and Pedestrian Program Management. She will be updating and writing curriculum as well as coordinating and instruction of traffic safety classes throughout the United States. 

In a message she sent out earlier this month, Mary Ann wrote:

I want you all to know that I love you all, and have appreciated all that you have done for me over these nearly 19 years. When I first came to the Highway Safety Office, I had just left “screaming media” so there was a lot to learn. I have learned so much from each of you.

As I begin this new chapter in my life, I want you all to keep doing what you do every day-prevent traffic related injuries and fatalities in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Your impact may never be individually known, but know in your hearts that you have saved lives and that there are many children, teens and adults that are still around the family dinner table as a result of your caring, passion and commitment.

Again, thank you all for being so incredible! I will miss working with you every day and mostly will miss YOU!

If you need anything in her absence, please contact Dr. Lori Rice, (804) 367-1143 or lori.rice@dmv.virginia.gov.  If you need any assistance with Click It or Ticket, please e-mail clickitorticket@aol.com. If you need any assistance with TREDS, please e-mail treds.saveslives@dmv.virginia.gov. 

And if you'd simply like to stay in touch with Mary Ann, her new contact information is below:

Mary Ann Rayment, Traffic Safety Specialist-Instructor
TSI, Traffic Safety Division
6500 S. MacArthur Blvd.
BMB, Room 144, RTI-70
Oklahoma City, OK 73169
405.954.8147
Mary.Rayment@dot.gov

 

 

DMV Begins Issuing Temporary 5% Overload Permits

The Department of Motor Vehicles would like law enforcement to be aware that they are now issuing Temporary 5% Overload Permits to customers who purchase the permits online.

Purchasing Overload Permits online is a new service that DMV began offering November 27, 2012.  The temporary permits are printed from customers’ printers and are good for 15 days.  Customers should receive their permanent permits in the mail within 15 days of conducting the online transaction.

Below is a sample of the new Temporary 5% Overload Permit.


 

Va. road deaths and injuries down, but trend stalls

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.

"It is encouraging," said Stephen Read, a highway safety engineer with the Virginia Department of Transportation. "We're seeing some great strides, but we know we need to focus our resources."

Deciding where and how to direct those resources is one of the purposes behind Virginia's Strategic Highway Safety Plan, a federally mandated document that state officials created in 2006 with input from local, federal and private stakeholders. Officials recently updated the plan for the first time after reviewing traffic data from the intervening years.

Continue reading...

 

 

VIDEO: Traffic Incident Management for First Responders

The Traffic Incident Management (TIM) Subcommittee of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Highway Safety Committee has produced a new 18-minute training video entitled Manage to Survive: Traffic Incident Management for First Responders.

Over 24 years, more than 278 law enforcement officers were struck and killed by vehicles. That averages out to one officer killed each month. Five firefighters were killed in "struck by" incidents in 2010 and an average of 23 highway workers were struck and killed by vehicles each month in 2010. In total, an average of one towing professional is killed every 6 days.

To some degree, traffic incidents are inevitable. But they're definitely something that we need to manage better for the benefit of everyone involved – for commerce, for convenience, and most of all, for safety. Traffic Incident Management (TIM) is one way we can all pull together in the same direction on an incident scene. The National Unified Goal (NUG) provides the framework for Incident Management for Responders:

  • Responder Safety;
  • Safe, Quick Clearance; and,
  • Prompt, Reliable Interoperable Communications.

This training video provides the basic tools to understand TIM, work together on-scene, and ultimately work together to clear the scene quickly and safely. The aim of TIM is to reduce incident duration significantly, reduce secondary collisions, and improve safety for all motorists who may be driving near incidents.

WATCH THE VIDEO

Chooser Cruiser


WRAP’s Successful Launch of Region’s Cab-Cop Car

“The ‘Chooser Cruiser’ is a useful reminder of the costs of drunk driving.” – The Washington Post, 11-23-12

While Greater Washington residents prepared for the Thanksgiving holiday, WRAP teamed-up with partners the Arlington County Police Department and Red Top Cab to successfully launch the region’s new, innovative and specially-outfitted motor vehicle designed to deter impaired driving in the metro area.

The vehicle, nicknamed the “Chooser Cruiser,” is a joint initiative between the aforementioned three organizations and aims to serve as a poignant reminder this holiday season that, as every drunk driving incident is 100-percent preventable, people have a choice in how they’re transported at the end of an evening.

Read more...

Westmoreland County Sheriff's Office Initiates DUI Blood Draw Program

The Westmoreland County Sheriff’s Office has become the lead law enforcement agency in the Commonwealth of Virginia to conduct in-house blood draws on DUI arrestees. The Westmoreland Commonwealth’s Attorney assisted in obtaining a court order allowing one of their sworn deputies to conduct the procedure.

This innovative measure allows for the Sheriff’s Office to remove more intoxicated drivers from the roadways because it saves the office valuable time in processing these cases.

Continue reading...


Distracted driving a priority for 2013 Virginia General Assembly

Distracted driving — led by drivers who text while driving — again is at the forefront of legislative concerns for the 2013 Virginia General Assembly.

The Virginia State Crime Commission is supporting legislation that will make texting while driving a Reckless Driving offense, making it a misdemeanor charge.

Leading the effort is state Del. Benjamin L. Cline (R-Dist. 24), who has drafted House Bill 1360, and Del. Tom Rust (R-Dist. 86), who has drafted House Bill 1357.

Cline’s bill provides that driving while simultaneously using a handheld communications device for something other than verbal communication constitutes driving a motor vehicle that is not under proper control, and therefore punishable as reckless driving, a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of $2,500.

Under current law, the more specific offense of “texting while driving” only incurs a $20 fine and is a secondary offense.

Continue reading...

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