U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich have announced more than $365,000 for the New Mexico Department of Transportation to help prevent drunk driving and improve safety on New Mexico roads. The funds will support local safety efforts including sobriety checkpoints, seat belt safety education and enforcement, and ignition interlock programs.
The department will receive four grants funded through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s State Traffic Safety Information Systems Grants program, which is authorized by the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) transportation act. The funding includes $235,849 to support impaired driving countermeasures, $57,173 for the state’s traffic safety information systems, $6,464 to support motorcyclist safety, and $65,682 to support protections for vehicle occupants.
“These funds will help New Mexico continue the fight to end drunk driving and make roads safer for everyone,” said Udall, a long-time advocate for eliminating drunk driving, and a member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. “New Mexico’s work to combat drunk driving demonstrates that progress is possible, but any number of preventable deaths on our roads is too many, and I’ll continue to push for investments in preventative measures that help keep drunk drivers off the road and improve highway safety.”
“These investments will fund countermeasures to reduce impaired driving throughout New Mexico,” Heinrich said. “Raising awareness and funding preventative efforts to address unnecessary and tragic drunk driving fatalities across the state will help keep our roads and families safe. These grants also support traffic and motorcyclist safety measures. When motorists have access to safety education programs, it reduces car accidents and keeps drivers out of harm’s way.”