Thursday, August 27, 2009

State, National Traffic Safety Leaders to Convene in Savannah

Distracted Driving, New Technologies Among Topics to be Discussed

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and the Georgia Governor's Office of Highway Safety will host the annual GHSA meeting at The Savannah International Trade & Convention Center August 30-September 2. Approximately 500 top highway safety and public health officials from across the country will be in attendance. The 2009 GHSA conference theme Toward Zero Deaths: Every Life Counts focuses on the programs and strategies needed to reduce roadway deaths. This is the vision GHSA believes the country should strive for, with the interim goal of reducing fatalities by half in the next 20 years. The conference will kickoff Monday morning, August 31 and will feature as keynote speakers:

The Honorable Deborah A.P. Hersman, Chairman, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). Ms. Hersman will discuss steps states should take to reduce roadway deaths and injuries. Ms. Hersman was appointed as NTSB Chairman by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate in July. This will be her first address before the highway safety community in her new role as Chairman. James Vondale, Director, Automotive Safety Office, Ford Motor Company. Mr. Vondale will discuss the role of the automobile industry in achieving a significant reduction in traffic deaths. He also will talk about Ford's SYNC hands-free calling system, which the company believes reduces driver distraction. In a subsequent workshop, Mr. Vondale will discuss Ford's MyKey tool that allows parents to monitor their teens driving behavior. Workshops will address a multitude of traditional and emerging highway safety issues. Topics include:

Teen Drivers: Crashes Waiting to Happen
New and Cool Highway Safety Technologies
Rural Highways Don't Have to be Dieways

Getting Aggressive with Motorcycle Safety What's Driving Distracted Driving?
A conference program is available online at News media representatives may call GHSA Communications Director Jonathan Adkins on site in Savannah at 202-669-9746.
General session and workshop speakers will be available to the media following their sessions.

The GHSA Annual Meeting is being sponsored by a variety of state and local organizations. A list is available online,

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA)® is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy and enhance program management. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

States Increase Efforts to Combat Drunk Driving

Women Becoming a Larger Part of the Problem

Drunk driving remains one of America's deadliest crimes. And the last few weeks of summer vacation are a time of increased road travel and drunk driving fatalities and injuries. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, August and September are among the most deadly periods on the roadways. The nation has made dramatic progress in reducing drunk driving deaths, but there were still more than 11,000 alcohol-impaired deaths in 2008--deaths that were completely preventable.

This is why GHSA's member State Highway Safety Offices are joining forces with law enforcement officers across the country to take part in the national "Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest." crackdown on impaired driving during the Labor Day holiday period. The crackdown, which runs from August 21 through September 7, includes sobriety checkpoints and saturation patrols, as well as a $13 million national media campaign supplemented by state-funded advertising.

This year, increased awareness is focused on women, who represent a growing percentage of drunk drivers. According to FBI figures that cover about 56 percent of country, the number of women arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs was 28.8 percent higher in 2007 than it was in 1998, while the number of men arrested declined 7.5 percent. Additionally, a new study from the Washington University School of Medicine reports a 40 percent increase in binge drinking among women ages 21 to 23 from 1979 to 2006.

State data also demonstrate this trend. In California, women accounted for nearly 19 percent of all DUI arrests in 2007, compared with 14 percent in 1998. Minnesota also saw a 5 percent increase in female DUI arrests during this period. Other states including Vermont, Missouri, New Jersey and New Mexico report similar trends. States are beginning to address this trend in their media messaging. New Mexico recently conducted a campaign entitled "Women Drive Drunk, Too."

Barbara Harsha, Executive Director of GHSA, expects more states to focus on anti-DUI efforts toward women. Harsha says, "Women are driving more like men and, unfortunately, have picked up some of their dangerous habits. While males continue to represent the large majority of DUI arrests, it is alarming that women's rates have increased so significantly."

While the crackdown's enforcement and education components are helping to curb the number of drunk drivers on the road, progress is also being made on the legislative and technological fronts. An increasing number of states now require all convicted DUI offenders have an alcohol ignition interlock installed on their vehicle. This device measures a driver's Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) through a breath test before the car is allowed to start. Just this year, three more states have enacted this law, bringing the total number of states with such rules to 11.

A list of state-specific crackdown efforts is available on GHSA's website:

For a current list of drunk driving laws, visit:

Friday, August 07, 2009

Adirondack Book House Talks Leadership

August 7, 2009 (San Dimas, CA) American Heroes Press announced that the co-author of Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style, Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.) will be a guest on the internet-based radio program Adirondack Book House.

Date: September 4, 2009
Time: 7:00 PM Pacific
Listen Live:

Adirondack Book House reviews books and provides authors an outlet to dicuss their work. The Adirondack Book House is hosted by Peter Klein, the author of numerous travel and hiking books on the Adirondack area of New York State as well as the author of the fiction series The Valkyrie Vampire.

Raymond E. Foster was a sworn member of the Los Angeles Police Department for 24 years. He retired in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant. He holds a bachelor’s from the Union Institute and University in
Criminal Justice Management and a Master’s Degree in Public Financial Management from California State University, Fullerton. He has completed his doctoral studies in business research. Raymond is a graduate of the West Point Leadership program and has attended law enforcement, technology and leadership programs such as the National Institute for Justice, Technology Institute, Washington, DC.

Raymond has been a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fullerton and is currently a faculty advisor and chair of the
Criminal Justice Program at the Union Institute and University. He has experience teaching upper division courses in law enforcement, public policy, technology and leadership. Raymond is an experienced author who has published numerous articles in a wide range of venues including magazines such as Government Technology, Mobile Government, Airborne Law Enforcement Magazine, and Police One. He has appeared on the History Channel and radio programs in the United States and Europe as subject matter expert in technological applications in law enforcement.

His first book,
Police Technology is used in over 100 colleges and universities nationwide. He latest book, Leadership: Texas Hold ‘em Style has been adopted by several universities for course work in leadership; by several civil service organizations and required reading for promotion; and, has been well received in the wider market.

Using poker as analogy for
leadership, Captain Andrew Harvey, CPD (ret.), Ed.D. and Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret.), MPA found the right mix of practical experience and academic credentials to write a definitive book for leaders. Working together, Harvey and Foster have written Leadership: Texas Hold em Style. Most often leaders find they are given a set of resources people, equipment, funds, experience and a mission. As Foster noted, "You're dealt a certain hand. How you play that hand as a leader determines your success."

More than a book: A fun and entertaining journey through
leadership that includes an interactive website to supplement knowledge gained from the book.
Proven and Tested: Not an academic approach to
leadership, but rather a road-tested guide that has been developed through 50-years of author experience.
High Impact: Through the use of perspective, reflection, and knowledge, provides information that turns
leadership potential into leadership practice.
Ease of Application: Theory is reinforced with real-life experience, which results in accessible and practical tools leaders can put to use immediately.
High Road Approach: Personal character and ethical beliefs are woven into each leadership approach, so leaders do the right thing for the right reasons.
Uses Game of Poker: Rather than a dry approach that is all fact and no flavor, the game of poker is used as a lens through which to view
leadership concepts.

Lieutenant Raymond E. Foster, LAPD (ret)

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

GHSA Supports Distracted Driving Summit

GHSA is pleased to learn that Secretary LaHood plans to convene a distracted driving summit this fall. There are a variety of challenges with distracted driving, and we commend the Secretary for leading the effort to address this important highway safety issue. GHSA is particularly interested in strategies for enforcing texting and cell phone bans as well as technological applications that would limit or eliminate distractions. The Association looks forward to working with the Secretary and other partners as we develop distracted driving countermeasures.

Cell phone and texting laws are posted online at:

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA)® is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy and enhance program management. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit