By TRAVIS HANDY
Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles is looking to honor outstanding efforts made by individuals and organizations to make Virginia’s roadways safer.
DMV has given these awards since 1992. According to DMV spokesperson Sunni Brown, that is when the staff from the Virginia Board of Transportation Safety developed the program, intended to recognize efforts geared toward safety as well as agencies and businesses exhibiting exemplary service.
“The Transportation Safety Awards are simply a way to recognize crash reduction efforts, for individuals or groups of individuals who have really done a great job in promoting different safety activities,” said Brown. “These awards have been going on for years as a way to really honor people who have a commitment to safety.”
Awards are given in 13 different categories, which include the Lifetime Safety Achievement Award, presented to an individual who has made significant contributions on behalf of transportation safety initiatives and programs throughout their lifetime, and Impaired Driving, granted for promoting alcohol- and drug-free driving. There are also awards for promoting seatbelt safety, bicycle and pedestrian safety, public transportation safety, awards for people or groups that educate children and teens about the importance of traffic safety, and several other categories.
An example of a past award, according to Brown, is the Motorcycle Safety award, given last year to a program called Rider Alert, based in Richmond. Rider Alert spreads important safety messages about making sure to wear helmets and being aware of your surroundings and other issues associated with motorcycle safety. A media award also was given to a Roanoke Times reporter who worked on a series of stories on traffic safety.
Entries will be judged on creativity, imagination, uniqueness, the impact on the community, and the use of volunteers and private sector resources. These awards are for programs that took place in 2012.
“If you know someone or a group or organization you believe deserves one of these awards, we really encourage you to enter them,” said Brown. “It is such a great way to honor folks for recognizing the importance of these safety awards.”
Virginia DMV will accept nominations through March 15. To download a nomination form and obtain eligibility requirements, visit www.dmvNOW.com. Entries must be postmarked by March 15 and winners will be notified in May.
Nominations may be submitted by mail to: The Governor’s Transportation Safety Awards, c/o Audrey Odum, Room 405, Post Office Box 27412, Richmond, Virginia 23269-0001.