DelDOT Advises Travelers to Expect Heavy Traffic Over 4th of July Holiday

As the 4th of July holiday weekend approaches, the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) advises motorist to expect heavy traffic volumes on roads throughout the state. AAA Mid-Atlantic is forecasting more than 116,000 Delawareans will travel at least 50 miles during the holiday weekend.

In addition, DelDOT reminds motorists that there will be many pedestrians and bicyclists out and local parades and fireworks displays taking place over the long weekend that will impact traffic.

“No matter how you plan to get around this weekend, doing so safely should be everyone’s top priority,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “We want everyone to reach their destination safely as the summer travel season begins and more people are on the roads.”

Motorists can increase their safety, and reduce the risk to others by doing the following:

• Always wear seatbelts
• Never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol
• Obey posted speed limits
• Do not drive distracted
• Do not drive aggressively

Following these five rules significantly decreases the likelihood of being involved in a crash as these are the leading cause of crashes involving serious injury or death on our roads. To date, there have been 75 crash-related fatalities on Delaware roads, a 40% increase over the same time period last year.

For residents and guests to eastern Sussex County, DART’s Beach Bus routes will have additional buses running this weekend before and after the fireworks display in Rehoboth and is just $2 to ride one way and parking is free at park & ride locations in Rehoboth and Lewes. DART’s entire 4th of July schedule can be viewed here.

DelDOT also has more than 200 traffic cameras available on DelDOT.gov and the free DelDOT mobile app to view real-time traffic conditions across the state.


DelDOT Observes National Pollinator Week

The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) is observing National Pollinator Week and continuing its commitment to promote the establishment of pollinator sites across the state.

DelDOT has recently established two new pollinator areas on its’ campus in Dover, adding to the 60 sites previously created through the Department’s “Enhancing Delaware Highways” initiative. The Department’s largest pollinator site, Dove’s Nest, is a 43-acre meadow located adjacent to U.S. 301 in Middletown planted with native wildflowers that bloom across the growing season to ensure that pollinators have a food source all year long and Milkweed to provide a breeding habitat for the monarch butterfly, which has seen its numbers drop by nearly 80 percent.

In addition to supporting pollinators these sites beautify roadside landscapes with native plants and reduce the need for mowing.

“In an average year, DelDOT mows more than 51,000 acres of grass across the state and making some of these areas pollinator-friendly is another way we can increase our commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski.

In May, the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles’ Support Pollinators license plate was recognized by the Automobile License Plate Collectors Association’s (ALPCA), receiving the Best Plate Award for 2021. The Support Pollinators Plate showcases a combination of vibrant colors, native plants, birds, bees, and butterflies. Purchasing the plate for a one-time fee of $50 online or at any DMV location, helps support pollinator habitat maintenance throughout the State of Delaware. Seventy percent of the fee or $35 goes directly to DelDOT’s Environmental Stewardship Office to assist with creating, enhancing, and preserving pollinator habitats. To date, more that 500 plates have been purchased.

To celebrate the national recognition, visitors to the Delaware State Fair will be able to enter for a chance to win one of the new Support Pollinators plates by stopping by the DelDOT booth in the Delaware building.

National Pollinator Week was initiated and is managed by Pollinator Partnership to address the urgent issue of declining pollinator populations, as pollinators provide pollination services to over 180,000 different plant species and more than 1200 crops. Pollinator Week has now grown into an international celebration, promoting the valuable ecosystem services provided by bees, birds, butterflies, bats, beetles, moths, wasps, and flies. More information can be found at pollinator.org.


New DMV Support Pollinator Plate Creating a Buzz

The Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is excited to announce its new specialty Support Pollinators License Plate recently won the Automobile License Plate Collectors Association’s (ALPCA) Best Plate Award for 2021.

This morning at 10:00 am Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski, Deputy Secretary of Transportation Shanté Hastings, Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles Director Jana Simpler, Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles Deputy Director Amy Anthony, Senator Stephanie Hansen, and Cyndi McCabe President of the Automobile License Plate Collectors Association gathered at St. Jones Reserve in Dover to celebrate the award-winning plate.

The Support Pollinators Plate showcases a combination of vibrant colors, native plants, birds, bees, and butterflies. By purchasing the plate for a one-time fee of $50 online or at any DMV location, you help support pollinator habitat maintenance throughout the State of Delaware. Seventy percent of the fee or $35 goes directly to the Delaware Department of Transportation’s Environmental Stewardship Office to assist with creating, enhancing, and preserving pollinator habitats.

“At DMV we strive to provide a first-class experience for everyone whether in person, on the phone or online,” shared Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “Our specialty plates give our customers the ability to financially support an organization and an avenue to proudly display their support. For us they are more than just aluminum collections of numbers you affix a sticker every couple of years. They symbolize causes near and dear to our customers. It’s a service we are proud to provide.”

“The Support Pollinators Plate bloomed from a collaboration between DelDOT’s Environmental Studies Office, Senator Stephanie Hansen, former Secretary of Transportation Jennifer Cohen, and the Delaware Native Species Commission,” commented Director of the Division of Motor Vehicles Jana Simpler. “The process took about 2 years and we were beyond thrilled with the final design. It’s really a stunning plate. We are so grateful to be recognized by APLCA.”

“So much of the food we eat everyday depends on the tiniest animals whose incredible work many of us take for granted, and one of the best ways we can protect the fragile ecosystems of these often highly-specialized creatures is by making sure we are all aware of their importance,” said Senator Stephanie Hansen, D-Middletown. “That’s why I worked with Representative Debra Heffernan, Senator Dave Sokola and the Delaware DMV last year to create a special Delaware license plate for people who want to support pollinator habitat creation and conservation. While we didn’t set out to win any awards, we all know how serious Delaware takes its license plates, and I’m so excited this beautiful design is getting the attention it deserves.”

ALPCA’s Best Plate Award Coordinator Gus Oliver said “Many of the members commented about the combination of attractiveness and how the plate number did not interfere with the design like it does with most colorful plates. I knew it had an excellent chance of winning the moment I first saw it.”

Community Relations Officer Susan Lee crafted the initial plate design and Susan Detwiler an author and illustrator from Baltimore, Maryland transformed the concept into the colorful work of art now available from DMV. To date, 531 Support Pollinators plates have been reserved since its June 2021 release.

To purchase yours or one of our other specialty plates go to dmv.de.gov/VehicleServices/tags/. Also, make sure to stop by and see us at the Delaware State Fair July 21 through July 30. In addition to DMV’s annual 5 digit black and white tag giveaway, we’ll be giving away a Support Pollinators Plate to recognize this special plate and all it’s attempting to achieve.

This is the state’s second time winning an ALPCA for best license plate. Back in 2008, the organization declared Delaware’s limited-edition Centennial License Plate the best in the country. The DMV currently has 135 specialty plates representing a variety of organizations and causes. Out of the 1,141,367 vehicles registered in the State of Delaware 39,044 are specialty plates.

ALPCA members worldwide nominate the best new plates and then vote based on two judging criteria: the overall attractiveness of the license plate design and its legibility as a tool for public safety and law enforcement. Since 1954, ALPCA has promoted license plate collecting and research, the exchange of information and plates. With over 2,800 members from 50 states and 19 countries, ALPCA is the largest license plate hobbyist organization in the world. For more information on the award or to see the other nominees visit alpca.org/bestplate/2021/.

 


2021 U.S. Road Fatalities Projected Highest in 16 Years, Delaware at 15-year High

An estimated 43,000 people were killed on U.S. roads last year, the highest number in 16 years according to data released this week by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The 10.5% jump over 2020 numbers was the largest percentage increase since NHTSA began its fatality accounting in 1975.

The 139 fatalities on Delaware roads were the highest number since 2006, and included 30 pedestrians, 24 motorcyclists, and two bicyclists.
This year is seeing a continued escalation with 56 fatalities already occurring year to date in 2022, a 62% increase over the same time period last year. Should this trend continue, it will be the most fatalities on Delaware roads since 2004.

“Sadly, this national data is not surprising given what we are seeing happen on Delaware roads,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “DelDOT is investing hundreds of millions of dollars in projects each year to make our roads safer, but there’s only so much we can from an engineering standpoint. We need everyone to do their part when it comes to safety.”

“Every person should reach their destinations and then return home safely each day,” said Governor John Carney. “The busy summer season is almost upon us and there will be even more people on the roads – driving, walking, biking – let’s all work to keep safety in mind to prevent more tragedies.”

DelDOT and its partners in highway safety are constantly working to combat traffic fatalities and serious injuries on Delaware roadways through multiple efforts, such as the 2021-2025 Delaware Strategic Highway Safety Plan, as one death on our roads is too many. This Plan, developed through multi-agency coordination, has nine emphasis areas and provides a framework to reduce fatalities and serious injuries resulting from crashes on Delaware’s roadways.


Create a Safer Ride During Motorcycle Awareness Month

Governor John Carney has proclaimed May as Motorcycle Awareness Month and the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV), in support of the Delaware Office of Highway Safety’s (OHS) Motorcycle Safety campaign, urges both motorists and motorcyclists to create a safer ride through education and awareness.

Motorcyclists of all skill levels, both novice and advanced can enroll in a DMV Motorcycle Safety Course. Beginner course benefits include professional training, 10% off your motorcycle liability insurance, exemption from taking the DMV road test and graduates automatically get a license to ride. Advanced course benefits include professional training and 15% off your motorcycle liability insurance.

Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski commented, “We continue to stress the need for increased safety awareness on our roads for all modes of transportation. With the arrival of warm weather, more motorcycles will be on the roads and over half of all fatal motorcycle crashes involve another vehicle. Regardless of how you choose to travel, safety should be everyone’s top priority.”

“Whether it’s your first time on a motorcycle or you’ve been riding for years, please enroll in one of our courses,” urged Director of the Delaware DMV Jana Simpler. “The combination of classroom and road training will not only make you a better driver but will also help reduce the likelihood of a mishap.”
For a list of available courses or enrollment details CLICK HERE, visit dmv.de.gov and search on motorcycle courses, e-mail motorcyclecourse@delaware.gov or contact the below for more information:

Beginner Rider Program
New Castle County – 302-832-5163
Kent County – 302-744-2658
Sussex County – 302-853-1030

Experienced Rider Program
New Castle – 302-862-5163
Kent – 302-744-2658
Sussex – 302-853-1030

In 2021, 24 motorcyclists were killed on a Delaware roadway. This year 3 motorcyclists have died. Even if you are not a motorcyclist, always look twice at intersections, don’t tailgate motorcycles, and eliminate distractions while driving. For more motorcycle safety tips visit https://www.youtube.com/user/delawaredmv. For information on all programs offered by the DMV CLICK HERE or visit DMV.de.gov and click on Driver Services.