Finally, a special license plate is available that will benefit public safety. As of August 2010, a plate will be available which displays a broken heart with “Remembering Victims of Impaired Drivers” encircling it. This plate was designed by Barbara Degnan who lost her 20 year old son on Christmas Eve of 1992 to an impaired driver. It is her hope that the plates will remind drivers not to drive while impaired and prevent the heartache that families experience from loved ones dying or being severely injured at the hands of impaired drivers.
Any new special license plates in the State of Minnesota must be enacted by the legislature and signed by the governor. Barb Degnan and her husband John began this process five years ago with the help of Senators Geoff Michel and Steve Murphy and Representative Keith Downey, along with the continual support of Sharon Gehrman-Driscoll, Executive Director of Minnesotans For Safe Driving. It was finally passed into law this session. Since then the Department of Public Safety has been of great assistance in making the design a reality.
Reflecting on the importance of this new license plate, Nancy Johnson, President of Minnesotans For Safe Driving, said “hopefully, the symbol and the words will remind the driving public that driving is very dangerous and every driver needs to focus 100% on their driving. Driving with any impairment can be deadly“.
The plates may be purchased at your nearest Service Center where you would go to purchase new tabs. The additional cost for the plate is $10, which goes to the State of Minnesota. The plates are not only intended to honor those who have been killed or injured by an impaired driver but to provide support and encouragement to those who remember them and advocate on their behalf as well as encourage increased awareness for the need of safe driving.