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LUCAS COUNTY, OH (Toledo News Now) -
Lucas County has been awarded a $65,000 grant from the Ohio Department of Public Safety's Ohio Traffic Safety Office for the 2014 federal fiscal year, which began Oct. 1, 2013 and ends Sept. 30, 2014. The goal of this grant is to reduce motor vehicle crashes, deaths, injuries, and costs associated with these crashes.
The Educational Service Center of Lake Erie West, under the direction of Superintendent Sandra Frisch, will once again be the administering agency for this grant. The center committed to the first traffic safety grant in October of 1988 and has administered them ever since.
"Focus areas for the grant year will center on teen driver safety, increasing seat belt use, reducing impaired driving, and promoting motorcycle safety," said Gwen Neundorfer, coordinator for the Lucas County Traffic Safety Program.
During Lucas County's fiscal year for 2013, 34 people lost their lives in 33 fatal crashes. Eight of the 34 deaths were motorcyclists and seven were pedestrians. A total of 30 percent of the crashes involved alcohol or drugs with an average BAC of .211. Moreover, 65 percent of the people who had seat belts available were not buckled at the time of their crash. Seat belt use in Lucas County is 81.5 percent.
The Traffic Safety Program is directed by a coalition, including representatives from law enforcement agencies, city, county and state engineers, hospital trauma coordinators, businesses, citizens, and other agencies focused on safety issues.