Each time you pull out onto one of our state’s roadways, you’re heading into the equivalent of a blizzard, but not the kind that involves whiteouts and snowplows.
Today we’re all driving in a snowstorm of risk created by drivers who are impaired behind the wheel for numerous reasons ranging from excessive alcohol use to legal and illegal drug use to drowsiness to distractions like cell phone use. The latest statistics from 2021 show 148 of 497 crash fatalities – 30% – involved at least one type of impairment. This spring we’re going to get our own snowplows out and start clearing the way for future seasons of safer driving. Watch for the kickoff of a significant statewide education campaign on the dangers of driving impaired. You can look forward to numerous new resources including fact sheets, safety talks and more to share these life-saving messages.
of fatal accidents involved at least one type of impairment
But there’s no need to wait. You can make a big difference now. Employers are among the most trusted and effective sources of driving safety information. While more materials are coming, there are already numerous resources at your fingertips on our new DriveSafeMN website. Here are just a few great tools:
- Five-Minutes for Safety talks on impaired and distracted driving
- Get the Facts handouts covering impaired, distracted and drowsy driving
- Coaching Cards for quick reference
- Videos for impactful storytelling
Spring will come to Minnesota and, with your help, so will a new season of awareness of the risks of driving while impaired in any way. Let’s work together to drive home this important message – “If you are using a substance, overtired or involved in an activity that hampers your driving ability, you ARE impaired.”