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KDOT accepting Transportation Safety award nominations
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TOPEKA – Nominations for the 2020 Transportation Safety awards are now being accepted by the Kansas Department of Transportation. Traffic safety advocates can be nominated in one of two categories – People Saving People Award and the Hero Award.

The People Saving People Award recognizes an individual or organization who has made outstanding contributions to the improvement of transportation safety behavior in Kansas. The Hero Award honors the individual who risked his or her own life for someone else when they happened upon a crash or while trying to prevent the likelihood of a crash in a one-time traffic safety-related incident.

More details about the awards and nomination forms can be found at Nominations must be submitted online or by mail by 11:59 p.m., Feb. 24.

The awards will be presented April 21 and 22 at the annual Kansas Transportation Safety Conference in Topeka.

2019 People Saving People Award recipients:

Rita Lesser, Perry Lecompton High School – for her passion and dedication in creatively teaching high school students about seat belt usage and distracted and impaired driving with the use of sidewalk messages, PSAs on YouTube, pledge cards, posters, window painting, health fair booth, drunk goggles and the Convincer.

Amber Rollins, – for her instrumental role in the passing of a Good Samaritan law (HB 2516) in the state of Kansas to protect citizens from liability if they break into a vehicle to rescue a trapped child, vulnerable adult or animal.

Overland Park Police Department – for utilizing the Data-Driven Approach to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS) to significantly reduce the number of crashes at Oak Park Mall and two major intersections adjacent to the mall.

2019 Hero Award recipients:

Deputy Robert K. Kunze, III, Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office – for demonstrating extreme bravery and courage during a traffic stop in which he was mortally wounded but still managed to pursue and capture his assailant.

Sergeant Mitchell Talley, Miami County Sheriff’s Office – for saving the life of a person with a severed artery in the back seat of a vehicle.