Transportation Improvement Association

Transportation Improvement Association Transportation safety engineering, education, and enforcement services. BOARD OF DIRECTORS

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

Chairman
DENNIS G. KOLAR, P.E.

Managing Director
Road Commission for Oakland County
(Board Member Since 2011)

Vice Chairman
KIRK MORRIS
Executive Vice President
Chief Strategy Officer
Joyson Safety Systems
(Board Member Since 2014)

Secretary
JENNIFER L. WHITTEAKER
Regional Manager
Corporate & Government Affairs
DTE Energy Company
(Board Member Since 2020)

Treasurer
MARTIN J. OLEJNIK, CPA
Partner
Plante Moran
(Board Member Si

Managing Director
Road Commission for Oakland County
(Board Member Since 2011)

Vice Chairman
KIRK MORRIS
Executive Vice President
Chief Strategy Officer
Joyson Safety Systems
(Board Member Since 2014)

Secretary
JENNIFER L. WHITTEAKER
Regional Manager
Corporate & Government Affairs
DTE Energy Company
(Board Member Since 2020)

Treasurer
MARTIN J. OLEJNIK, CPA
Partner
Plante Moran
(Board Member Si

Operating as usual

TIA is looking forward to bringing Michigan's transportation and public safety professionals together (virtually) on Nov...
10/13/2021

TIA is looking forward to bringing Michigan's transportation and public safety professionals together (virtually) on November 3rd to discuss "Automated Vehicle Technology: An Update for First Responders, Engineers, and Public Officials." Speakers will include: Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA; Chief Jeffrey Dixon, Florida Highway Patrol; Paul Ajegba, Director of the Michigan Department of Transportation; F/Lt. Matthew Williams, Michigan State Police; Gurunath Vemulakonda, Manager of Global Safety Policy and Rulemaking at Ford Motor Company; and, Lauren Daling, Manager of Advanced Technology Policy at General Motors.

As always, please travel safely!

TIA is looking forward to bringing Michigan's transportation and public safety professionals together (virtually) on November 3rd to discuss "Automated Vehicle Technology: An Update for First Responders, Engineers, and Public Officials." Speakers will include: Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA; Chief Jeffrey Dixon, Florida Highway Patrol; Paul Ajegba, Director of the Michigan Department of Transportation; F/Lt. Matthew Williams, Michigan State Police; Gurunath Vemulakonda, Manager of Global Safety Policy and Rulemaking at Ford Motor Company; and, Lauren Daling, Manager of Advanced Technology Policy at General Motors.

As always, please travel safely!

Shining a laser at an aircraft poses a serious safety threat and can result in large fines and criminal penalties.Laser ...
09/01/2021
The FAA Highlights Laser Strike Data

Shining a laser at an aircraft poses a serious safety threat and can result in large fines and criminal penalties.

Laser strikes increased in 2020 despite the decrease in flights due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pilots reported 6,852 laser strikes to the FAA last year, up from 6,136 in 2019. The number of incidents reported in 2020 incidents was the highest annual total since 2016.

People who shine lasers at aircraft face FAA fines of up to $11,000 per violation and up to $30,800 for multiple laser incidents. The FAA has issued $600,000 in fines since 2016, which includes $120,000 in 2021. Violators can also face criminal penalties from federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8JNg7UU35g

The FAA releases new laser strike data visualization highlighting this menacing and growing trend. Laser strikes are a menace to the skies. As a pilot, FAA A...

Thank you to the S4SD Program Coordinator, Kayla Thomas-Wright, for helping to educate others about the importance of dr...
08/06/2021

Thank you to the S4SD Program Coordinator, Kayla Thomas-Wright, for helping to educate others about the importance of driving safely! Attending the National Night Out in Flint and meeting between 1,000 - 1,500 people was a huge success! Also, a shout out to the amazing Flint Township Police Department for hosting this event. #makeapositivedifference

LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TEAM UP TO REMIND DRIVERS TO AVOID DISTRACTIONSTROY, Michigan --- The Transportation Improvemen...
05/18/2021

LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TEAM UP TO REMIND DRIVERS TO AVOID DISTRACTIONS

TROY, Michigan --- The Transportation Improvement Association (TIA) and several law enforcement agencies are joining forces to remind Michigan motorists to avoid distractions while driving.

Law enforcement officers from the Michigan State Police, county sheriff’s offices, and local police departments will begin conducting Operation Ghost Rider on Wednesday. The goal is to reduce distracted driving deaths and injuries. This lifesaving initiative is being coordinated by TIA.

“Too many people have been killed and injured due to distracted driving,” said Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA. “As a team, we can end this dangerous and preventable behavior. All we need to do is avoid distractions, and keep our eyes on the road and hands on the wheel while driving.”

Operation Ghost Rider uses unmarked spotter vehicles, which contain a law enforcement passenger. When the spotters observe a distracted driver, they radio a fully marked law enforcement unit to initiate a traffic stop.

Participating agencies include the Auburn Hills Police Department, Chesterfield Township Police Department, Clinton Township Police Department, Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, Michigan State Police, Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, Shelby Township Police Department, Sterling Heights Police Department, Taylor Police Department, and Utica Police Department.

“As a former fatal accident investigator, I have seen the terrible tragedy of distracted driving,” said Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard. “It is high on our priority list to prevent this danger through a combination of education and enforcement.”

Operation Ghost Rider was revealed at a press conference in Macomb County in 2017. During a total of 18 hours of enforcement, law enforcement officers conducted more than 907 traffic stops resulting in 726 citations and 34 arrests.

Drivers who use a hand-held device are 4 times more likely to get into a crash serious enough to cause injury according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash.

“On average, a driver takes their eyes off the road for 4.6 of every 6 seconds every time they send or read a text message,” said Chief John Blair of the Taylor Police Department. “At 55 MPH, that is the equivalent of driving the entire length of a football field while blindfolded.”

According to TIA, preliminary numbers for 2020 indicate 51 persons were killed and 5,559 were injured in 14,326 motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver in the state of Michigan. During 2019, 70 persons were killed and 6,842 were injured in 18,096 crashes involving a distracted driver.

“Distracted driving is 100 percent preventable,” said F/Lt. Michael Shaw of the Michigan State Police. “While we always hope that education and personal accountability will stop distracted driving, we know that enforcement is also necessary to help save lives.”

During April, which is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, TIA, State Farm, the Michigan State Police, county and local law enforcement, and high school students joined forces to remind the public to avoid distractions while driving. Through a $20,000 grant provided by State Farm, TIA challenged Michigan high school students to design a distracted driving awareness billboard. The selection committee chose a design created by Leah Howell, an 11th grade student at the West Shore Educational School District Career and Technical Education Center. The design, which is titled “Choose LIVING, not LOOKING,” had nearly 7 million impressions throughout the state of Michigan.

“If you get in a vehicle, you should make driving your priority, not looking down at your phone,” said Howell. “The main reason I chose the saying ‘Choose LIVING, not LOOKING’ is because anyone who makes the choice to drive distracted has the potential of injuring themselves or others around them.”

LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TEAM UP TO REMIND DRIVERS TO AVOID DISTRACTIONS

TROY, Michigan --- The Transportation Improvement Association (TIA) and several law enforcement agencies are joining forces to remind Michigan motorists to avoid distractions while driving.

Law enforcement officers from the Michigan State Police, county sheriff’s offices, and local police departments will begin conducting Operation Ghost Rider on Wednesday. The goal is to reduce distracted driving deaths and injuries. This lifesaving initiative is being coordinated by TIA.

“Too many people have been killed and injured due to distracted driving,” said Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA. “As a team, we can end this dangerous and preventable behavior. All we need to do is avoid distractions, and keep our eyes on the road and hands on the wheel while driving.”

Operation Ghost Rider uses unmarked spotter vehicles, which contain a law enforcement passenger. When the spotters observe a distracted driver, they radio a fully marked law enforcement unit to initiate a traffic stop.

Participating agencies include the Auburn Hills Police Department, Chesterfield Township Police Department, Clinton Township Police Department, Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, Michigan State Police, Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, Shelby Township Police Department, Sterling Heights Police Department, Taylor Police Department, and Utica Police Department.

“As a former fatal accident investigator, I have seen the terrible tragedy of distracted driving,” said Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard. “It is high on our priority list to prevent this danger through a combination of education and enforcement.”

Operation Ghost Rider was revealed at a press conference in Macomb County in 2017. During a total of 18 hours of enforcement, law enforcement officers conducted more than 907 traffic stops resulting in 726 citations and 34 arrests.

Drivers who use a hand-held device are 4 times more likely to get into a crash serious enough to cause injury according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash.

“On average, a driver takes their eyes off the road for 4.6 of every 6 seconds every time they send or read a text message,” said Chief John Blair of the Taylor Police Department. “At 55 MPH, that is the equivalent of driving the entire length of a football field while blindfolded.”

According to TIA, preliminary numbers for 2020 indicate 51 persons were killed and 5,559 were injured in 14,326 motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver in the state of Michigan. During 2019, 70 persons were killed and 6,842 were injured in 18,096 crashes involving a distracted driver.

“Distracted driving is 100 percent preventable,” said F/Lt. Michael Shaw of the Michigan State Police. “While we always hope that education and personal accountability will stop distracted driving, we know that enforcement is also necessary to help save lives.”

During April, which is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, TIA, State Farm, the Michigan State Police, county and local law enforcement, and high school students joined forces to remind the public to avoid distractions while driving. Through a $20,000 grant provided by State Farm, TIA challenged Michigan high school students to design a distracted driving awareness billboard. The selection committee chose a design created by Leah Howell, an 11th grade student at the West Shore Educational School District Career and Technical Education Center. The design, which is titled “Choose LIVING, not LOOKING,” had nearly 7 million impressions throughout the state of Michigan.

“If you get in a vehicle, you should make driving your priority, not looking down at your phone,” said Howell. “The main reason I chose the saying ‘Choose LIVING, not LOOKING’ is because anyone who makes the choice to drive distracted has the potential of injuring themselves or others around them.”

Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA, joined State Representative Jack O'Malley and State Senator Curtis VanderWall today to recogni...
05/11/2021

Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA, joined State Representative Jack O'Malley and State Senator Curtis VanderWall today to recognize Leah Howell for educating Michigan drivers about the dangers of distracted driving. Leah, a very talented 11th grade student at the West Shore Educational School District Career and Technical Education Center, designed the 2021 distracted driving awareness billboard. It is titled “Choose LIVING, not LOOKING.” The Special Tribute was also signed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist.

TIA truly appreciates State Farm funding this distracted driving awareness campaign!

Jim Santilli, CEO of TIA, joined State Representative Jack O'Malley and State Senator Curtis VanderWall today to recognize Leah Howell for educating Michigan drivers about the dangers of distracted driving. Leah, a very talented 11th grade student at the West Shore Educational School District Career and Technical Education Center, designed the 2021 distracted driving awareness billboard. It is titled “Choose LIVING, not LOOKING.” The Special Tribute was also signed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist.

TIA truly appreciates State Farm funding this distracted driving awareness campaign!

292 PEOPLE WERE KILLED, AND 31,233 INJURED, SINCE HANDS-FREE LEGISLATION WAS INTRODUCED IN MICHIGAN DURING 2016TIA, VICT...
04/29/2021

292 PEOPLE WERE KILLED, AND 31,233 INJURED, SINCE HANDS-FREE LEGISLATION WAS INTRODUCED IN MICHIGAN DURING 2016

TIA, VICTIMS, AND OFFICIALS SAY IT'S TIME TO ACT - PASS SENATE BILL 409

TROY, Michigan --- Jim Santilli, CEO of the Transportation Improvement Association (TIA), and two victims are encouraging the Michigan Legislature to make distracted driving a top priority and take action on Senate Bill 409. SB 409, which was introduced today by State Senator Ruth Johnson (R-Holly), would make Michigan a hands-free state. There are currently 26 hands-free states in the nation.

“Since TIA and former State Representative Martin Howrylak announced the first hands-free bill on September 6, 2016, preliminary numbers indicate 292 people were killed and 31,233 were injured in 81,886 crashes that were reported to involve a distraction,” said Santilli. “Many of these deaths and injuries likely would have been prevented if the Michigan Legislature and Governor enacted a hands-free law. SB 409 is the only distracted driving bill in the Michigan Legislature that will improve safety, as well as be enforceable if it becomes a law.”

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, drivers who use a hand-held device are 4 times more likely to get into a crash serious enough to cause injury. Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash.

“We are seeing too many drivers looking at, and typing on, electronic devices while driving,” said Wayne County Sheriff Raphael Washington. “To make our roads safer, we need the Michigan Legislature to enact a true hands-free bill such as SB 409. Lives can be saved, and injuries will be prevented, if drivers keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel while driving.”

If SB 409 becomes a law, drivers would be prohibited from holding or using a portable electronic device on a highway or street in Michigan. Drivers could still use their phone hands-free with Bluetooth or a windshield or dash mount using voice-activated features, such as Siri, or a single tap or swipe to answer a call.

According to Santilli, California was the first state in the nation to enact a ban on hand-held cell phone use in July of 2008.

“Based on traffic crash records two years before and two years after the hand-held ban went into effect, overall traffic deaths declined 22% and hand-held cell phone driver deaths went down 47%,” said Santilli. “After Georgia implemented a hands-free law, distracted driving dropped 21%.”

The Hands-Free Michigan Campaign began after Santilli attended the funeral for Ally Zimmerman, a 16-year-old Romeo High School student who was hit by a distracted driver while traveling as an innocent passenger on December 28, 2010. TIA immediately joined forces with Ally’s family and friends, and numerous businesses and law enforcement agencies, to create the Remembering Ally: Distracted Driving Awareness Campaign. Ally’s mother, Laurel Zimmerman, and Santilli both agreed that Michigan’s current texting law is too specific and a hands-free law would be easier to enforce. After communicating with law enforcement leaders throughout the nation to determine the best language for a bill, Santilli officially announced a plan to send a hands-free recommendation to the Michigan Legislature during a press conference on March 30, 2016. Shortly after the announcement, Howrylak reached out to Santilli and offered to sponsor a bill. Since 2019, TIA and victims have partnered with Johnson on hands-free bills. SB 409 is the latest bill.

“My daughter, Ally, lost her life in 2011 due to a distracted driver,” said Zimmerman. “Since then, too many families have lost a loved one due to distracted driving. Ally was passionate about helping others and would want SB 409 passed.”

Jim Freybler, who lost his son to texting and driving, supports the ban on hand-held cell phone use. He has worked on the Hands-Free Michigan Ca

292 PEOPLE WERE KILLED, AND 31,233 INJURED, SINCE HANDS-FREE LEGISLATION WAS INTRODUCED IN MICHIGAN DURING 2016

TIA, VICTIMS, AND OFFICIALS SAY IT'S TIME TO ACT - PASS SENATE BILL 409

TROY, Michigan --- Jim Santilli, CEO of the Transportation Improvement Association (TIA), and two victims are encouraging the Michigan Legislature to make distracted driving a top priority and take action on Senate Bill 409. SB 409, which was introduced today by State Senator Ruth Johnson (R-Holly), would make Michigan a hands-free state. There are currently 26 hands-free states in the nation.

“Since TIA and former State Representative Martin Howrylak announced the first hands-free bill on September 6, 2016, preliminary numbers indicate 292 people were killed and 31,233 were injured in 81,886 crashes that were reported to involve a distraction,” said Santilli. “Many of these deaths and injuries likely would have been prevented if the Michigan Legislature and Governor enacted a hands-free law. SB 409 is the only distracted driving bill in the Michigan Legislature that will improve safety, as well as be enforceable if it becomes a law.”

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, drivers who use a hand-held device are 4 times more likely to get into a crash serious enough to cause injury. Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash.

“We are seeing too many drivers looking at, and typing on, electronic devices while driving,” said Wayne County Sheriff Raphael Washington. “To make our roads safer, we need the Michigan Legislature to enact a true hands-free bill such as SB 409. Lives can be saved, and injuries will be prevented, if drivers keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel while driving.”

If SB 409 becomes a law, drivers would be prohibited from holding or using a portable electronic device on a highway or street in Michigan. Drivers could still use their phone hands-free with Bluetooth or a windshield or dash mount using voice-activated features, such as Siri, or a single tap or swipe to answer a call.

According to Santilli, California was the first state in the nation to enact a ban on hand-held cell phone use in July of 2008.

“Based on traffic crash records two years before and two years after the hand-held ban went into effect, overall traffic deaths declined 22% and hand-held cell phone driver deaths went down 47%,” said Santilli. “After Georgia implemented a hands-free law, distracted driving dropped 21%.”

The Hands-Free Michigan Campaign began after Santilli attended the funeral for Ally Zimmerman, a 16-year-old Romeo High School student who was hit by a distracted driver while traveling as an innocent passenger on December 28, 2010. TIA immediately joined forces with Ally’s family and friends, and numerous businesses and law enforcement agencies, to create the Remembering Ally: Distracted Driving Awareness Campaign. Ally’s mother, Laurel Zimmerman, and Santilli both agreed that Michigan’s current texting law is too specific and a hands-free law would be easier to enforce. After communicating with law enforcement leaders throughout the nation to determine the best language for a bill, Santilli officially announced a plan to send a hands-free recommendation to the Michigan Legislature during a press conference on March 30, 2016. Shortly after the announcement, Howrylak reached out to Santilli and offered to sponsor a bill. Since 2019, TIA and victims have partnered with Johnson on hands-free bills. SB 409 is the latest bill.

“My daughter, Ally, lost her life in 2011 due to a distracted driver,” said Zimmerman. “Since then, too many families have lost a loved one due to distracted driving. Ally was passionate about helping others and would want SB 409 passed.”

Jim Freybler, who lost his son to texting and driving, supports the ban on hand-held cell phone use. He has worked on the Hands-Free Michigan Ca

Address

100 E. Big Beaver Rd., Suite 910
Troy, MI
48083

Opening Hours

Monday 7am - 4:30pm
Tuesday 7am - 4:30pm
Wednesday 7am - 4:30pm
Thursday 7am - 4:30pm
Friday 7am - 4:30pm

Telephone

(248) 334-4971

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Our Story

BOARD OF DIRECTORS EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

Chairman DENNIS G. KOLAR, P.E. Managing Director Road Commission for Oakland County (Board Member Since 2011)

Vice Chairman KIRK MORRIS Executive Vice President Chief Strategy Officer Joyson Safety Systems (Board Member Since 2014)

Secretary MICHAEL PALCHESKO Regional Manager Corporate & Government Affairs DTE Energy Company (Board Member Since 1990’s)

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In case you missed it! This week on The Daily Drive we spoke with Monica Yesh from the Transportation Improvement Association about Move Over Laws.... https://fb.watch/73UdF58n8-/
There are several TIA vehicles in front of my house on Roanoke street in Oak Park. Can I get a heads up on what is happening? Thank you.
We're happy to display this important reminder, brought to you by Transportation Improvement Association, to all drivers through our digital billboards . Drive safe Detroit!
On Thursday night, officers working on the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning & Transportation Improvement Association impaired driving grant made a traffic stop for speeding. Two adult males were taken into custody for driving on a suspended license and outstanding warrants. A subsequent search of the vehicle was conducted and officers located an active manufacturing of methanphetamine operation. The Michigan State Police were contacted and responded to assist in the safe removal and collection of evidence. Official charges are still pending. We’d like to thank the State Police and White Lake Township Fire Department for their assistance.