law enforcement

TZD Enforcement Grant Program

The TZD Enforcement Grant Program provides federal funds to law enforcement agencies to conduct enhanced traffic enforcement.

Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic (HEAT)

In 2009, the Minnesota Departments of Transportation (MnDOT) and Public Safety (DPS), with the Minnesota State Patrol, initiated the Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic (HEAT) program, a statewide, three-year aggressive driving enforcement and education campaign to improve roadway safety. This collaborative effort targets one of the more ubiquitous, high-risk driving behaviors—speedingwhile promoting compliance with all traffic safety laws.

HEAT enforcement corridors were collaboratively selected by MnDOT, MnDOT district traffic engineers, and Minnesota state troopers. Criteria for corridor selection included over-representation of fatal and serious-injury crashes and trooper observation of drivers’ behavior. The HEAT enforcement campaigns were completed through officer overtime hours from the Minnesota State Patrol and local law enforcement agencies. The DPS coordinated the HEAT education campaign, and MnDOT provided the data analyses to support project planning, administrative decisions, and the outcome evaluation.

Enforcement Mobilizations

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety's Office of Traffic Safety conducts six enforcement mobilizations involving approximately 350 participating law enforcement personnel throughout the year. The mobilizations focus on seat belt, speed, and impaired driving enforcement. In addition, two one-day enforcement campaigns focus on distracted driving and on enforcing Minnesota's Ted Foss Move Over Law.

Research has consistently shown enforcement efforts do not have a lasting effect on drivers' behavior if the majority of the public is unaware of them. Combining increased enforcement activity with adequate public awareness efforts has been found to result in long-lasting improvements in driver behavior. By increasing the number of citations/arrests and raising the perceived risk of being ticketed, compliance with laws is increased.

Click it or Ticket

Occurs in April, May, and October

  • Enhanced belt campaigns have been successful in increasing seat belt compliance.
  • Despite success in lowering the annual traffic death count, far too many unbelted motorist deaths still occur on Minnesota roads.

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over

Occurs in December and mid-August through early September

  • Despite success in lowering the annual traffic death count, one-third of the state's total traffic deaths are a result of an impaired driving crash.
  • In the last five years in Minnesota, there have been 651 drunk driving deaths. Each year in the state, around 30,000 motorists are arrested for DWI — the majority, young adult males.
  • It's critical to encourage Minnesotans to plan ahead for a safe and sober ride to avoid the dangers and consequences of drunk driving.

Speed Enforcement

Occurs in June and July

  • Each year, illegal or unsafe speed is a leading contributing factor in Minnesota's fatal crashes — accounting for at least 130 deaths annually, of which 70 percent occur on rural, two-lane roads in Minnesota.
  • Young adult motorists are the most common offenders and those at greatest risk.
  • From 2009 to 2011 in Minnesota, fatalities resulting from speed-related crashes cost Minnesota more than $338 million.

Distracted Driving

Occurs one day in mid-April

  • Each year in Minnesota, distracted or inattentive driving is a factor in one in four crashes, resulting in at least 70 deaths and 350 serious injuries.
  • OTS estimates these numbers are vastly underreported due to law enforcement's challenge in determining distraction as a crash factor.

Move Over

Occurs on August 31 (the anniversary of the date Trooper Ted Foss was killed as a result of a motorist not moving over for an emergency vehicle)

  • When traveling on a road with two or more lanes, drivers must move over one full lane away from stopped emergency vehicles with flashing lights activated — ambulance, fire, law enforcement, maintenance, and construction vehicles.
  • Drivers should reduce speed if unable to safely move over a lane.

Law Enforcement Liaisons

Law enforcement liaisons (LELs) are a resource to local agencies on traffic enforcement programs and information. LELs are available to help with efforts to inform governing bodies of the importance of traffic safety, motivate officers, and contact the media.


The Department of Public Safety provides training for local law enforcement agencies for field sobriety, occupant protection, child passenger safety, commercial vehicles, and crash data collection.

Saved by the Belt

The Saved by the Belt program has helped create strong relationships between law enforcement agencies and communities since 1999 by honoring traffic crash survivors who were buckled up.

Educational Materials

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety develops and distributes educational materials to the public at no cost.

Reports and Statistics

The Importance of Crash Data: Analyzing crash data allows officials and law enforcement to better address traffic safety issues — by understanding why and where crashes are occurring and who is being affected.

The Office of Traffic Safety produces documents concerning Minnesota's motor vehicle crashes. In addition, OTS houses the state's Fatality Analysis Reporting System analyst. Two major publications produced by OTS are the Minnesota Motor Vehicle Crash Facts and the Minnesota Impaired Driving Facts.

Rural Highway Safety Clearinghouse - Enforcement section

The Rural Highway Safety Clearinghouse provides links to safety publications and other resources, organized by topic.