A place to find past Coalition spotlighted programs.
October Spotlight: Missouri Law Enforcement Phlebotomy Program (LEPP)
The Missouri Law Enforcement Phlebotomy Program (LEPP) is funded through grants with the Missouri Department of Transportation Highway Safety & Traffic Division. It has also been funded through grants received from NHTSA and GHSA. The Missouri Safety Center at the University of Central Missouri provides project activities for this grant.
The LEPP began through work with a Task Force made up of law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and highway safety professionals. The initial Task Force project worked to develop best practice templates for policies and procedures, create a Missouri LEPP Program Manual, and provide resources for agencies related to development of an LEPP. The first Pilot Policy & Training Project, funded through MoDOT Highway Safety & Traffic Division for FY2023, allowed for 11 law enforcement officers in the state to apply, be selected as candidates, and participate in educational and clinical training in Phoenix, Arizona. Funding allowed for Task Force members to attend the training at Phoenix College as well.
During FY2023, nine officers attended and successfully completed the training and are now qualified to draw blood in Missouri. As of September 30, 2023, there were 55 blood draw completions by the qualified Law Enforcement Phlebotomists (LEPs). The majority (52) of these were for suspected impaired driving cases; two (2) were training draws; and one (1) was conducted during the investigation for a homicide.
The LEPP was continued through funding in FY2024. The program will be conducted at the Moberly Area Community College (MACC) site in Mexico, MO. The program at MACC has been developed with classes as close to the Phoenix College model as possible, requiring six weeks of online classes, three days of in-person class sessions, and clinical externships. LEPs must complete 100 successful blood draws during their externships prior to being allowed to draw blood for their agency(ies). Bringing the program to Missouri will allow for less time away from the officer’s agency while still maintaining the highest level of training for clinical standards.
In FY2024, it is anticipated that 24 additional officers will be trained through MoDOT Highway Safety & Traffic Division funds, while also adding seven (7) more officers to the training through GHSA funding. By the end of FY2024 it is anticipated that 40 trained LEPs will be available throughout the state to assist in reducing the number of impaired drivers on our roadways.
September Spotlight: National Child Passenger Safety Week
Child Passenger Safety (CPS) is vitally important to protect our youth while traveling on our roadways. One way MoDOT’s Highway Safety Office (HSO) is able to assist our citizens of Missouri in protecting their children while in their vehicles, is to purchase car seats that are distributed to those that are not able to afford these seats for their children. The families have to meet the Federal Poverty Level guidelines in order to receive a car seat.
The HSO purchases car seats twice per year through funding from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), once in the Spring and once in September. These seats are distributed to the registered car seat fitting stations across the State of Missouri. In order to be a registered inspection station, the agency has to have at least one Child Passenger Safety technician on staff in order to educate the caregiver on the proper way to install the car seat.
In the Spring of 2023, the HSO was able to order 1,427 Convertible and 826 High Back Booster seats for the inspection stations that were in need of the seats. In September 2023, the HSO was able to order 624 Convertible and 57 High Back Booster seats for the needed inspection stations.
September 17 -23, 2023 is the National Child Passenger Safety Week, with September 23rd being National Seat Check Saturday. There will be car seat check events all across the State of Missouri. The listing of inspection stations in Missouri can be found on the SaveMOLives.com website under the Occupant Protection tab and Child Passenger Safety Enforcement Week link. The HSO also has free Child Passenger Safety brochures and CHAD stickers for car seats that can be requested at any time. These brochures clarify the Missouri State laws regarding car seat usage. The CHAD stickers are used to put on the car seats, so in the event of a crash, if the driver and/or passengers are incapacitated in the crash, the first responders will know who to contact for the children. You can contact the HSO at 1-800-800-2358 to order any of these items.
August Spotlight: Knowledge of Traffic Signs and Safe Driving in Missouri
Project completed by researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis with grant funding from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) though the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT). In Missouri, knowledge of traffic signs is part of the license process. Missouri is one of the few states that uses this screen as part of the licensure renewal process, however, gaps in administration in various licensure offices have been observed. With help from MoDOT, Missouri Driver’s License Bureau, and the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Washington University School of Medicine further developed the procedure for how to administer and score this test. Since knowledge of traffic signs has been a regular part of both obtaining/renewing a driver’s license in Missouri and part of medical fitness to drive evaluations performed by occupational therapists, we wanted to know how useful knowledge of traffic signs was in identifying older drivers with potential driving safety impairment. In our recently published research study, it was shown that knowledge of traffic signs was found to be a significant predictor in identifying older drivers with dementia who were safe to drive from those who were not.1 With the evidence supporting the utility of the traffic sign-naming test (TSNT) in identifying older drivers with dementia who are safe drivers from those who are unsafe drivers, we proceeded to share our knowledge and train representatives from the Missouri Driver’s License Bureau, statewide Missouri License Offices and MSHP in the administration and scoring procedures. Training materials were established and placed in each office across Missouri. This new training platform in traffic signs is now a requirement for all employees in licensure and exam offices across Missouri. The goal of the project was to standardize the administration of the TSNT to ensure consistency across all licensing bodies in Missouri. Standardizing the procedure not only ensures objectivity and fairness across examinees from all backgrounds, but also allows staff to identify those who many need further assessment. For more information regarding this project, please email email@example.com
1. Barco PP, Wallendorf M, Rutkoski K, Dolan K, Rakus D, Johnson A, Carr DB. Validity and Reliability of the Traffic Sign Naming Test (TSNT) and Written Exam for Driving Decisions (WEDD) as Measures of Fitness to Drive Among Older Adults. Am J Occup Ther. 2020 May/Jun;74(3):7403205090p1-7403205090p10. doi: 10.5014/ajot.2020.034389. PMID: 32365315.
July Spotlight: Doug Hebert's BRAKES Program
B.R.A.K.E.S. Brings Pro-Active Teen Defensive Driving Program To Missouri
The free national teen defensive driving program B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible and Keep Everyone Safe) is making roadways in “The Show-Me State” safer, thanks to a series of training sessions in Bridgeton and Jefferson City that have been partially funded by the Missouri Department of Transportation.
The 501(c)(3) charity was founded by multi-time Top Fuel drag racing champion Doug Herbert in honor of his two sons, Jon and James, who lost their lives in a tragic car crash in 2008. Herbert turned that personal tragedy into a lifesaving mission that has trained more than 110,000 teens and their parents to date.
Utilizing vehicles provided by Kia Motors, B.R.A.K.E.S. offers teens extensive behind-the-wheel instruction from professional trainers including current and former law enforcement officers and professional racing drivers, teaching the teens and their parents how to be safer on the road. Exercises include Distracted Driving Awareness, Panic Braking, Crash Avoidance, Drop-wheel/Off-road Recovery and Car Control/Skid Recovery.
Car crashes are among the leading causes of death among teens. B.R.A.K.E.S. graduates are 64 percent less likely to get in a crash within their first three years after completing the B.R.A.K.E.S. program, according to a study conducted by the University of North Carolina-Charlotte.
Missouri teens had the opportunity to receive behind-the-wheel training, with sessions in Bridgeton on the weekends of June 3-4, 2023 and June 10-11, 2023, as well as Jefferson City on July 8-9, 2023. A total of 531 teens completed the program.
For more information, please visit www.putonthebrakes.org.
June Spotlight: The St Joseph Safety and Health Council
Provides lifesaving safety education through its unique Safety Town program
Safety Town is a miniature city complete with sidewalks, crosswalks, streets, signs, and replicas of town buildings. Safety Towners who are 5 to 7 years of age attend either 8 half-day or 4 full-day sessions and learn about pedestrian safety, traffic safety, Bicycle safety, 911 safety, railroad safety, fire safety, seatbelt safety, school bus safety, playground safety, stranger danger, and more. Topics are taught by certified classroom teachers with presentations by law enforcement officers, firefighters, and other community workers. One of the objectives is to introduce the children to community workers who can help in times of need.
A favorite activity for children is the time they get riding tricycles on the town. Attendees wear helmets and ride trikes equipped with seatbelts to emphasize a safe ride while they explore the city streets, obeying the working stop light and road signs. The goal of the program is to reduce injury and death of children resulting from preventable accidents.
Safety Town was established in 1978 by parents who were concerned for their children’s safety around traffic and other safety situations. Thousands of children have completed the program over the years with third generations now attending.
To register or view information about Safety Town please visit www.stjoesafetycouncil.org for more facts about this unique program.
May Spotlight: Drug Evaluation and Classification Program
Program funded from MoDOT Highway Safety and Traffic Division
This program originated in the early 1970's by the Los Angeles Police Department. Back then, law enforcement officers reasonably suspected that the arrestees were under the influence of drugs but lacked the knowledge and skills to support their suspicions. In response, two LAPD sergeants collaborated with various medical doctors, research psychologists and other medical professionals to develop a simple, standardized procedure for recognizing drug influence and impairment. Their efforts culminated in the development of a multi-step protocol and the first Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) program. The LAPD formally recognized the Drug Recognition Expert program in 1979. It was later renamed the Drug Evaluation and Classification Program (DECP). Missouri’s program is housed at the Missouri Safety Center. There are approximately 156 active Drug Recognition Experts in the State. Missouri has one to two DRE Schools a year that consist of two weeks of classroom work followed by one week of Field Certifications where students put what was taught in the two week school to practical use. Field Certification sites vary class to class, however Missouri has recently been working with Pennsylvania at a site in Philadelphia that has been proven to be a successful site. The class held in April recently came back from Philadelphia completing 128 evaluations in four days by 21 students. To put that in perspective, in Missouri 475 enforcement evaluations were conducted in all of 2022 and 154 have been completed so far for 2023. Officers interested in becoming a DRE should submit an application to the State Coordinator, Robert Paul. A Technical Advisory Panel reviews the applicants and selects the students for the class based on needs in an area or agency. If seats are still available after filling the program needs, then agencies can add more DREs. For more information about the DRE Program, contact Robert Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org.
April Spotlight: A University of Missouri Program
Program funded from MoDOT Highway Safety and Traffic Division
MU School of Medicine’s Injury Prevention Program, ThinkFirst, has a mission to prevent traumatic injuries through education, research, and policy. The goal is to educate people, especially young people, and their caregivers about their vulnerability to brain and spinal cord injuries, common causes of these injuries, and how to prevent them. ThinkFirst for Teens is free and open to any school or community program involving teens. This presentation can be done assembly style or in a classroom setting. The presentation provides an explanation on the basic anatomy of the central nervous system and the permanent physiological changes caused by a brain or spinal cord injury. Students learn the common causes of these injuries and how they could be prevented. This information is followed up by the personal testimony of a ThinkFirst Voices for Injury Prevention speaker. These speakers have sustained a brain or spinal cord injury, usually due to a motor vehicle crash. The students then have the opportunity to engage with the speakers through a question-and-answer session. ThinkFirst has been doing presentations for going on 45 years. ThinkFirst for Teens is presented to over a 100 schools per year. If you are interested in more information or would like to schedule a ThinkFirst for Teens presentation in your school or community, please contact Nancy Foster at email@example.com or call 573-882-1176.
March Safety Spotlight - Farm Safety
As Highway Safety advocates, it is not only our responsibility to educate the public on the importance of wearing a seat belt for every trip, not driving distracted or impaired, wearing your motorcycle helmet, and to not speed, it is also our duty to educate the public on slow moving vehicles, as they are of vital importance to our food supply. In 2018, the existing, but not active Farm Safety Committee reconvened with new vigor and new members, to showcase, emphasize and educate the public on multiple safety issues facing farmers today. Topics that are addressed include but are not limited to; State Fair education, rural health care for farmers, farmer suicide prevention, grain bin safety, rollover safety and highway safety. In the beginning, Coalition funding was awarded to sponsor a small media campaign that focused on spring planting and fall harvest, and is geared to educate and remind the public what to do when encountering slow moving vehicles on the roadway. This campaign has blossomed into a much larger media push that has the capacity to reach many more drivers. According to Farm Bureau, the average farmer feeds 166 people, so losing a farmer in any circumstance can be devastating to the community. Our goal with Show-Me Farm Safety is to provide educational resources, tips and safety plans to producers and their families on and off the farm.
To view other Farm Safety media messaging, please visit Slow Moving Farm Vehicle Awareness | Missouri Department of Transportation (savemolives.com).
To get further information on Farm Safety, please visit Welcome to Show-Me Farm Safety - Show-Me Farm Safety (mo.gov).
TRACTION: Teens Taking Action To Prevent Traffic Crashes
The TRACTION Program is a youth traffic leadership training program designed to empower high school students to take an active role in preventing traffic crashes and promoting safe driving habits. It is based on the belief that the youth themselves can become a powerful force, creating positive changes within their schools and communities.
TRACTION is a carefully developed three-day training program for students and their advisors. This model is designed to develop natural leadership skills within our youth; to explore knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors related to the cause and effect of traffic crashes. Teams develop an action plan, enabling students to plan and carry out specific projects during the school year to promote safe driving habits and prevent traffic crashes.
TRACTION consists of two phases:
- TRACTION Training Conference – 6 to 14 students and 2 advisors from each high school are invited to attend one of the summer conferences as school teams. As teams actively participate, they will not only receive educational training, but will also develop individualized team action plans to be implemented within their own schools upon their return.
- Implementation of Action Plans – In the following school year their action plan developed during the summer conference are carried out through the support of the adult advisors, student team members, and additional students who will be recruited to assist with these events. As a result, TRACTION has the potential to have a very positive effect, not only on the participants themselves, but also on their schools and their entire community.
2023 Conference Dates
- Cape Girardeau – Drury Plaza & Conference Center: July 16-18, 2023
- Kansas City – Embassy Suites by Hilton: July 20-22, 2023
The summer conference schedule includes general sessions, 7 workshops, team break-out time, recreational activities and other fun, surprise events. The conference is designed to be high energy and provides activities from early morning until late evening.
Participants must pay a $15.00 registration fee. All other expenses (lodging, meals and conference materials) are covered. Teams are responsible for their own transportation expenses.
Keep Your Keys
MU Health Care’s Injury Prevention Program developed the Keep Your Keys program to help drivers aged 55 and older stay on the roadways as long as it’s safely possible. The goal is to reduce motor vehicle and motorcycle crashes involving older drivers through education and prevention methods. The Keep Your Keys program is free and open to any older adult and their family members or caretakers.
This class provides resources and information to help guide making informed decisions about current driving status, as well as staying medically and physically fit to drive. Topics in these classes include tips to navigate new roadway constructions, how to self-assess current driving status and the importance of developing a transportation plan. To accompany the class, the Fit to Drive booklet was developed by MU Health Care, with assistance from the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety’s Subcommittee for Elder Mobility and Safety, that provides information on the best ways to approach roadway safety.
If you are interested in more information or would like to schedule a Keep Your Keys presentation in your community please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (573)884-7143.