The city of Edina on Dec. 15 approved a joint powers agreement that allows for the shared use of a vehicle deployed to enforce distracted-driving laws.

The vehicle, which will be made available through the Distracted Driving Vehicle Program, is for use by the cities of Edina, Richfield, Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Hopkins, St. Louis Park and the Metropolitan Airport Commission.

The city of Edina is part of a grant group for the Toward Zero Deaths initiative along with these cities and MAC. Already, the police departments in this group work as a team and host events that focus on speed enforcement, impaired driving, seatbelt violations and distracted driving.

The shared vehicle is an unmarked pick-up truck that has emergency lights and docking stations for computers and video cameras. The purpose of the vehicle is to further enforce distracted driving laws and educate Minnesotans about them. In 2019, distracted driving contributed to 32 deaths and 3,279 injuries, according to the state’s Office of Traffic Safety.

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