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Take action to stop distraction behind the wheel


Tue, Aug 3rd, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

ST. PAUL - Attention drivers! Around 100 law enforcement agencies are conducting a distracted driving educational push coupled with an enforcement effort during the first week of August. Agencies will increase patrols on Aug. 5 during Gov. Pawlenty's proclaimed "Distraction Free Driving Day."

The effort is coordinated by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) Office of Traffic Safety. The event launch coincides with results from a AAA/Seventeen survey released today that shows nearly nine in 10 teenage drivers have engaged in a distracted driving behavior, such as texting or talking on a cell phone - although most of them know their actions increase their risk of crashing.

Driver distraction is a leading factor in crashes in Minnesota, accounting for at least 25 percent of all crashes annually, resulting in at least 70 deaths and 350 injuries. DPS reports these numbers are vastly underreported due to officers' challenges to determine "distraction" as a contributing crash factor.

The campaign address all distractions behind the wheel, beyond cell phone use and texting, according to Cheri Marti, director of the Office of Traffic Safety.

"Inattentive driving includes a range of distractions, from daydreaming to reaching for items to changing music," says Marti. "Our intent is to educate motorists that when you're behind the wheel, your focus needs to be on the road."

In 2008, it became illegal in Minnesota for drivers to read or compose texts/emails, and access the Web on a wireless device while the vehicle is in motion or a part of traffic, such as at a stoplight. It is also illegal for drivers under age 18 to use a cell phone at any time. There are other distracted driving laws that address a driver's duty "to drive with due care."

There are four main types of driver distraction:

· Visual - looking away from the road.

· Mechanical/Physical - taking hands off the wheel: manipulation of controls, such as dialing a cell phone or adjusting radio or music device.

· Cognitive - being "lost in thought," or focusing on a conversation, resulting in withdrawing from situational awareness.

· Combination of the above - reading a map or texting while driving.

DPS reports distractions cause drivers to react more slowly to traffic conditions, such as a vehicle stopping or pulling out in traffic. A University of Utah study reports that using a cell phone while drivin .....
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FCC to Hear from Minnesotans on Future of Internet

Tue, Aug 3rd, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS - The Federal Communications Commission's Michael Copps and Mignon Clyburn will meet with the public at a hearing on the future of the Internet in Minneapolis on Aug. 19.

WHAT: Public Hearing on the Future of the Internet

DA ..... 
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Rumble strip installation scheduled in Fillmore County

Fri, Jul 30th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

Motorists can expect brief lane closures as crews install rumble strips in Fillmore County beginning Monday, August 2. Flaggers will control traffic during the lane closures.

AAA Striping Service Co. is the prime contractor for the $221,702 ..... 
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NRDC's 20th Annual Beach Report: More Contaminants, Fewer Advisories for Minnesota's Lake Superior Beaches in 2009

Wed, Jul 28th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

Duluth, Minnesota (July 28, 2010) - Pollution continues to contaminate the water at America's beaches, causing 99 advisory days for Minnesota's Lake Superior beaches last year and 18,682 closing and advisory days nationwide. Meanwhile, as of July 23, ..... 
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Minnesota Trucking Related Fatalities: Lowest in 10 Years

Mon, Jul 26th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

Continuing a downward trend, cars and trucks collided less often in Minnesota during the past year than any year in the last decade.

According to statistics reported in the latest edition of Minnesota Motor Vehicle Crash Facts, published by th ..... 
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Minnesota Weekly Gas Price Update

Mon, Jul 12th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

Minnesota, MN, July 12- Average retail gasoline prices in Minnesota have fallen 3.4 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $2.64/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has fallen 1.8 cents per gallon in the last week to $2.71 ..... 
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Education Minnesota President Tom Dooher re-elected to national union post

Mon, Jul 12th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

ST. PAUL, Minn., July 12, 2010: Education Minnesota President Tom Dooher has been re-elected as a vice president with the American Federation of Teachers. Dooher was re-elected to the post during the AFT's 81st biennial convention in Seattle, WA, whi ..... 
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MDA urges homeowners to follow EAB quarantine rules as they clean up after storms

Tue, Jun 29th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

ST. PAUL, Minn. - As Minnesotans clean up after recent storms, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is reminding residents of Hennepin, Ramsey and Houston Counties to avoid moving ash trees and branches out of their counties due to the risk ..... 
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MCDONALD'S® & KEMPS HOST OPEN DOOR DAYS TO SUPPORT FARMERS in SOUTHEASTERN MN

Tue, Jun 29th, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

June 28, 2010 - Area Southeastern Minnesota McDonald's restaurants and one of its trusted suppliers, Kemps, are teaming up to help spread the message of the importance of dairy to our community.



One of the ways McDonald's will increas ..... 
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