The Menlo Park Police Department has been awarded a $52,584 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) for a year-long program aimed at preventing deaths and injuries on our roadways through special enforcement and public awareness efforts. The grant received by Menlo Park will aid in the city’s ongoing effort to improve traffic safety and the quality of life. The Menlo Park Police Department will use the funding as part of an on-going commitment to keep our roadways safe through both enforcement and education.
“Decreasing the number of traffic collisions in the City of Menlo Park is a priority for this police department, and this grant will assist us in making the roads safer for our residents and visitors,” said Menlo Park Police Chief Bob Jonsen.
The grant will assist in efforts to deal with traffic safety problems and to reduce the number of persons killed and injured in traffic collisions. While traffic deaths from all causes declined by nearly 39 percent between 2006 and 2010 in California, but rose by 2.6 percent in 2011. State and federal officials anticipate that figures will show another rise for 2012. DUI deaths remain the largest sector, at nearly 30 percent of traffic fatalities. Recent trends show increases in two new categories – distracted driving and drug-impaired driving.
Activities that the grant will fund include:
• Specialized DUI and drugged driving training such as Standardized Field Sobriety Testing (SFST), Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE), and Drug Recognition Evaluator (DRE).
• DUI Saturation Patrols
• Motorcycle safety enforcement
• Distracted driving enforcement
• Seat belt and child safety seat enforcement
• Speed, red light and stop sign enforcement
• Warrant service operations targeting multiple DUI offenders
• Compilation of DUI “Hot Sheets,” identifying worst-of-the-worst DUI offenders
• Stakeout operations to observe the “worst of the worst” repeat DUI offender probationers with suspended or revoked driver licenses
• Purchase of speed measuring and preliminary alcohol screening devices
Funding for this program is from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Photo of MPPD Smart Car taken by Chris Gulker in 2009