North Dakota Department of Transportation
608 East Boulevard Avenue, Bismarck ND 58505-0700 Toll Free 1-855-NDROADS – 1-855-637-6237
Governors Highway Safety Association Honors Two North Dakota Families
Bismarck, N.D. – The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) honored two North Dakota families, nominated by the North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT), – Tom and Arlene Deutscher and Lynn and Donna Mickelson – with the Peter K. O’Rourke Special Achievement Award. This national award recognizes individuals or programs for outstanding highway safety accomplishments and was presented at the 2018 Highway Safety Awards Luncheon yesterday. The luncheon was part of GHSA’s 2018 Annual Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia.
The Deutscher’s and Mickelson’s are parents who turned their grief over losing their children – Aaron and Allison – and grandchild – Brielle – and unborn grandchild to a drunk driver in 2012 into action, fighting impaired driving in North Dakota. They partnered with the North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) to help produce a media campaign, created an annual fundraising event, delivered presentations at schools across the state with the crashed vehicle, and partnered with legislators, state government officials, and advocacy groups to secure the passage of “Brielle’s Law.” Signed into law in 2013, the legislation increased penalties for all Driving Under the Influence (DUI) offenders, criminalized testing refusal, and assured mandatory participation in the 24/7 Sobriety Program for all repeat offenders.
Dedicated traffic safety advocates like the Deutscher’s and Mickelson’s can help North Dakota achieve the Vision Zero goal aimed at zero motor vehicle fatalities and serious injuries on North Dakota roads.
You can view Aaron, Allison and Brielle’s memorials on the North Dakota Crash Memorial Wall at VisionZero.ND.gov.