OTC Sheriff’s office sends out safe driving reminder

The Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Office and the Otter Tail County Safe Communities Coalition will join law enforcement agencies and community partners

nationwide in April to remind drivers about the dangers and consequences of distracted driving.

This annual campaign is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) distracted driving high-visibility enforcement and enhanced education efforts. The distracted driving effort focuses on ways to change the behavior of drivers through enforcement, public awareness, and education – the same activities that have curbed drunk driving and increased seat belt use.

According to NHTSA, between 2012 and 2019, 26,004 people died in crashes involving a distracted driver. In Minnesota, according to the Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety, from 2016-2020 more than 39,000 crashes were distracted driving related. 

“Every driver in Otter Tail County has a role in this effort,” said Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Office Detective Allen Mekash. “Distracted driving is an increasing habit that is putting everyone at risk. We want drivers to focus on the most important task: hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.” The Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Office and Otter Tail County Safe Communities Coalition’s goal with this campaign is simple – save lives by getting drivers to remember that the consequences of distracted driving are serious and could be deadly.