Phyllis Rousseau introduced Russ French from the Carlton County Sheriff's Department. Russ started out working as a traffic cop 10 years ago and now works for the General Investigations Department. 
He began by saying that Carlton County has the highest number of traffic fatalities of any county in the state. From August 1 until now, we have had 6 deaths, mostly due to winter driving. During that time period our county has also had 243 total crashes, 170 property damage cases, and 108 injuries. The 3 main causes of crashes are distracted driving, impaired driving, and inappropriate speed. Russ read parts of the MN Statute that prohibits the use of wireless devices for sending emails, texts, and searching the internet. It's a misdemeanor in MN if you are driving a vehicle and carries a $130 fine. It is permissible in MN to talk on your cell phone while driving, but even that is not a good idea. For instance, car headlights only allow us to see 160 feet in the dark. We travel 120 feet per second on the Interstate. If we send a 7 second text, that means you can't see for 540 feet ahead of you. The most fatal crashes are head on collisions. T bone crashes have a very low survivor rate, and rollovers create lots of injury from other objects in the car flying around. The worst intersections in Carlton County are at highway 33 and I 35 exit, and at Highway 45 and I 35 entrance, turning into Park and Ride lot. Even if you are a careful and safe driver, remember always watch out for the other guy! Many questions followed and we thanked Russ for his helpful advice and concern for our driving safety.