December 3, 2013
New Law Allows Temporary Deactivation of Vehicle License Plates
Major Benefit for Virginia Military; Motorcycle and RV Owners
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
December 2, 2013
Thanksgiving Weekend Traffic Crashes Claim 11 Lives
Alcohol a Factor in Four of the Crashes
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
November 26, 2013
Albemarle Co. Police: Click It or Ticket Campaign Underway
The Albemarle County Police Department is reminding drivers to buckle up and slow down during the busy Thanksgiving travel season. Read more...
VIDEO: Safety tips for senior drivers
Safety tips for senior drivers are available through Carfit, a program recently hosted by The Virginia Division of Aging. http://bit.ly/1c22iTO
November 20, 2013
Taking a look at flaws in texting law
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
November 4, 2013
One-in-Four Drivers Report Struggling to Stay Awake While Behind the Wheel
Motorists Ages 19-24 Most Likely to Drive Fatigued Despite Crash Risks
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
After fatal crash, some ask: How old is too old to drive?
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
October 23, 2013
State Police issue more than 300 citations for texting
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
October 1, 2013
Students Across Canada Find Eating and Drinking Biggest Driver Distraction During Morning Rush Hour
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
September 26, 2013
CSI: DUI – Virginia Governor Examines the Science behind Virginia’s DUI Detection
Commonwealth Touts Five-Consecutive Years of Declining DUI Deaths
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
DRIVE SMART® Virginia Announces Leadership Awards to Virginia Lawmakers
Awards were presented at the First Annual Virginia Distracted Driving Summit
RICHMOND — DRIVE SMART Virginia announces that the Virginia Coalition for Distraction Free Driving has awarded 11 Virginia legislators for their commitment to increasing safety on Virginia's roadways by working to strengthen laws against distracted driving. The awards were presented during the First Annual Virginia Distracted Driving Summit in Richmond, where more than 300 attendees took advantage of panels about distracted driving research, corporate liability as well as efforts to reach teen drivers with a safety message. Read more
September 25, 2013
Virginia State Police & Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company Partner to Promote "Move Over" Law
Safety and Law’s Importance Reasons for Joint Publicity Effort
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
September 4, 2013
Nine Individuals Die in Traffic Crashes During the Labor Day Holiday Weekend
One fatal crash involved a moped
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
July 26, 2013
Roanoke County police now keep records of traffic warnings
Officers have recorded 1,346 warnings since April 3, when the practice officially began.
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...
Teens learn about traffic safety during leadership retreat
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...
July 8, 2013
Fatal Traffic Crashes Claim Seven Lives Over 2013 Fourth of July Holiday Weekend
Three of the crashes involved motorcycles
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...
June 28, 2013
DMV Notice to Va. Law Enforcement About Legislative Changes to Motorcycles & Mopeds
New laws taking effect on July 1, 2013 affect Virginians who ride mopeds and motorcycles. Brochures arriving at agencies to explain new requirements.
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.
Celebrate Our Nation's Freedom This Fourth of July But If You Drive, Stay Free of Alcohol
Virginia State Police Step Up Patrols for Holiday Weekend
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...
June 25, 2013
Danville PD recognizes officers, citizens and media for traffic safety enforcement and promotional efforts
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...
June 24, 2013
Governor's 2013 Transportation Safety Awards Announced
Retired DMV District Program Manager Steve Goodwin honored with Lifetime Achievement Award
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...
June 20, 2013
DMV Alerts Law Enforcement to Change to Disabled Parking Placard Receipt
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...
June 18, 2013
Speakers Announced for Distracted Driving Summit Hosted by DRIVE SMART Virginia®
Summit will be held in Richmond on Sept. 19
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...
June 18, 2013
"Operation Border to Border" Yields 1,855 Summonses & Arrests on Route 15 in Six States
684 Speeders & 260 Seat Belt Violators Cited; 28 DUI Arrests
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...
June 17, 2013
Roanoke Co. Police: Click It Or Ticket campaign working
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...
June 7, 2013
Prince William County Police Issue 1,522 Tickets During May "Click It or Ticket" Campaign
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...
"Op Border to Border" — Va. State Police Participating in 6-State Enforcement Op to Reduce Crashes on 790+ Miles of US Route 151
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...
May 30, 2013
Tougher Laws on DWI, Distracted Driving Take Effect July 1
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
May 28, 2013
VSP Report Seven Traffic-Related Deaths on Virginia's Highways Over Memorial Day Weekend
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...
Tractor trailer drivers in New Kent put 'Phone Down, Just Drive'
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...
Police: U.S. 460 checkpoint death 'suspicious'
Details scarce, but police sergeant says 'external situations' may have contributed to crash
Police are treating the death of a Barboursville man who crashed Friday at a sobriety checkpoint on U.S. 460 as "suspicious."
Emerson Evans, 25, was driving a 1997 Honda CRV near the Campbell County/Bedford County line when he struck the rear of a Ford F-150 truck, police said.
Virginia State Police First Sgt. Michael Bailey said Tuesday that Evans was driving about 50 mph at the time. Read more...
May 17, 2013
Glen Allen High School wins ‘Arrive Alive’ contest
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...
May 16, 2013
Checkpoint Kicks Off 'Click It or Ticket' Seat Belt Campaign
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
April 24, 2013
New Study: Motorcyclist Deaths Spike in 2012
Approximately 5,000 Motorcyclist Fatalities Projected
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
Henrico Police & Richmond International Raceway Release Safe Driving PSA (VIDEO)
Before you start your engines, designate a sober driver if you plan on consuming alcohol. Henrico Police & RIR want you to see the checkered flag, NOT blue lights!" Watch now
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
March 15, 2013
Henrico sets effort to curb teen drinking
‘Zero tolerance’ policyfor violators part of plan
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
February 19, 2013
Texting while driving bill heads to Governor's desk where it faces uncertain fate
Legislation that would make texting while driving a primary offense and dramatically increase the fines for violators cleared the Senate today and now heads to Gov. Bob McDonnell for consideration.
"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
February 16, 2013
Beefed-up texting ban advances to uncertain fate
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
February 14, 2013
Transportation Safety Awards Recognize Crash Reduction Efforts
Applications Due March 15, 2013
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