FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 10, 2011 No.: 11-2524

Officers Receive Awards

photo Officers Receive Awards
Photo: (From l to r) Deputy Commissioner Pat Kemp, Marvin Towell, Phil McBroom, Thomas Gaulke, Allen Brandt, Gary Yamamoto. Photo courtesy of Alaska Highway Safety Office, DOT&PF

(JUNEAU, Alaska) — Pat Kemp, deputy commissioner of the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities presented awards to police officers Phil McBroom, of North Pole; Thomas Gaulke of Anchorage; Allen Brandt and Sergeant Gary Yamamoto of Fairbanks; for their dedicated enforcement of impaired driving and primary seat belt laws.

Soldotna police department officer Marvin Towell received an Award of Appreciation for his years of service; including writing more than 1,500 seatbelt citations without one public complaint over the past three years.

The Alaska Highway Safety Office hosted the 6th Alaska Strategic Traffic Enforcement Partnership (ASTEP) Summit in Anchorage April 27-29, 2011. ASTEP provides state and local law enforcement agencies with education and tools that promote and enforce traffic safety laws. In 2005, Alaska signed an agreement with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) to become one of 15 pilot states with a Strategic Traffic Enforcement Partnership (ASTEP) Program in order to reduce deaths and injuries caused by impaired drivers and to increase compliance with Alaska’s primary seat belt law.

National studies show that a combination of targeted educational messages and strategic enforcement encourages safe driving behavior and results in saved lives and the prevention of serious injuries. Traffic fatalities in Alaska have declined from 73 in 2005 to 56 in 2010, while the use of seatbelts has increased from 78.4 percent to 86.8 percent.

The ASTEP Summit heard presentations from Louisiana Sheriff Craig Webre, Oklahoma Sheriff John Whetsel, Pam Holt from the Missouri Injury and Violence Prevention Advisory Council, Gloria Mansfield-Averill and Sumner Police Department Officer Jake Yancey from Washington’s Target Zero and Boise Police Department Officer Jermaine Galloway as well as state and local experts.

“The Department of Transportation and Public Facilities uses the four e’s to promote safety of Alaskans on our roads: education, engineering, enforcement and evaluation and supports the fifth “e”-emergency response,” said DOT&PF Commissioner Marc Luiken. “We honor these awardees who participate in the education and enforcement of our laws to keep everyone safe.”

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More information regarding the awards and the individuals who received them go to:
dot.alaska.gov/stwdplng/hwysafety/assets/pdf/2011_ASTEP_AGENDA.pdf