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Chris Madill Appointed Traffic Safety Commission Deputy Director

Olympia, WA — The Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC) announced today that Chris Madill has been appointed Deputy Director, effective July 1.

Mr. Madill began with the agency in January 2005 as a program manager and has served as Director of the Programs and Services Division since 2012.

“We are pleased to welcome Chris into his new role as Deputy Director. He has unparalleled dedication to public service and is committed to our goal of Target Zero,” said Darrin Grondel, Director of WTSC.

Mr. Madill graduated with a degree in Psychology from Brigham Young University and received his master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University.

Campaign to Highlight “Drive High, Get a DUI”

Extra Summer DUI Patrols Kick Off July 1

(OLYMPIA, WA) With marijuana retail stores slated to open in early July, the Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC) is launching a campaign to remind those planning on patronizing the new businesses that driving high is illegal. The campaign is called “Drive High, Get a DUI.”

The new messaging coincides with Summertime DUI emphasis patrols kicking off July 1 and will feature three 30-second television commercials. The Colorado Department of Transportation produced and aired the commercials in Colorado earlier this year as part of their efforts to combat high driving.

The ads show individuals attempting activities while high. On-screen text points out that while it’s now legal to do these things while high, it is still not legal to drive under the influence of marijuana. You can view the ads here:

Although Initiative 502 did not provide funding for public education prior to legalization, the WTSC believes this campaign is critical to preventing impaired driving.

Everyone Has a Responsibility to Keep Motorcyclists Safe

OLYMPIA — Summer is here and the Department of Licensing, the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, and the Department of Transportation are reminding drivers of cars, trucks and buses to look out for, and share the road with, motorcycle riders.

To raise awareness about tragic but preventable motorcycle crashes, 17 large road signs are scheduled to be installed this summer in locations across Washington where fatal motorcycle crashes are highest. These signs should remain in place for 10 to 15 years.

“Increasing safe motorcycle riding and cooperation among all road users is essential to reaching Washington’s goal of zero traffic deaths by 2030,” Governor Jay Inslee said. “Motorists and motorcyclists are all responsible for making sure everyone arrives home safely.”

In Washington, motorcycle deaths are not steadily declining like overall traffic deaths. Motorcycles make up just 4 percent of the registered vehicles on our roads, but account for almost 15 percent of the traffic fatalities (2009-2011 average). Even worse, in 2012, motorcycle fatalities accounted for 19 percent (83 out of 438) of the total traffic fatalities in our state.

On a per-vehicle-mile basis, motorcyclists are more than 30 times more likely to die in a crash than occupants of cars, and five times more likely to be injured. Speeding, running off the road, and riding under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs are the main contributing factors in these crashes. Motorcyclists should always ride sober and within the posted speed limits, get the required training and endorsement, and wear DOT compliant helmets and protective gear.