Santa Monica police will continue special enforcement activities during the next 12 months — including DUI checkpoints, distracted driving enforcement, and speed, red light and stop sign enforcement — following a $100,000 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety.
The grant will aid in the city’s ongoing effort to improve traffic safety and quality of life through both enforcement and education.
SMPD Lt. Jay Trisler said this funding would enable the police department to provide additional officers in the field to concentrate on traffic related concerns and promote a safer traveling experience.
“While traffic deaths from all causes declined by nearly 39 percent between 2006 and 2010 in California, state and federal officials anticipate that figures will show a slight rise in 2011,” Trisler said. “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
— Speed, red light and stop sign enforcement
California Office of Traffic Safety Director Christopher J. Murphy said despite the recent increases, California’s roadways are still very much safer than they were before 2006.
“The Santa Monica Police Department will be keeping the pressure on through enforcement and public awareness so that we can continue saving lives and reach the vision we all share – toward zero deaths, every one counts,” Murphy said.
Funding for this program is from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.