ODOT: News Briefs

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Facial recognition software coming in 2008

Oregon residents soon will start to see a change in how DMV issues driver licenses and identification cards.

DMV will convert all its offices to centralized issuance of driver licenses and ID cards now that it has completed a pilot at five field offices in the Eugene-Springfield area. The rest of Oregon’s DMV offices will be converted one by one over the summer.

Under centralized issuance, DMV will issue an interim card to customers who qualify for Oregon driving privileges or an ID card. Customers will receive their permanent plastic cards – produced and mailed from a central location instead of provided at DMV field offices – typically within five to 10 business days after their visit to DMV. This is the same way that cards are issued in California, Washington and about a dozen other states.

The requirements for obtaining driving privileges or an ID card – such as driving tests and proof of identity and residency in Oregon – will not change.

‘The main difference customers will see is that they will get a paper interim card instead of the secure plastic card at the DMV office,’ DMV Administrator Lorna Youngs said. ‘The only other difference is minor changes in appearance of the permanent card.’

The centrally issued permanent card will have the same design and security features as the over-the-counter plastic card that DMV has been issuing since 2004. However, the new printing process creates a slightly different look and feel.

For details about centralized issuance and facial recognition, visit www.OregonDMV.com.

Safe driving conserves fuel, saves lives

The Oregon Department of Transportation is encouraging motorists, during the busy summer traveling season and beyond, to practice safe driving — and conserve fuel at the same time.

Studies show the faster you drive, the more fuel you use: and speed is the number one factor in crash fatalities in Oregon. So ‘slow down’ is the phrase everyone is using.

The U.S. Department of Energy offers consumers several tips for conserving fuel:

  • Stay within posted speed limits. For example, driving 65 mph rather than 55 mph increases fuel consumption by 15 – 20 percent.
  • Remove excess weight. An extra 100 pounds in your vehicle could reduce your mpg by up to 2 percent.
  • Drive sensibly — don’t tailgate. If you practice safe driving, you can avoid unnecessary braking and acceleration, improving your fuel economy by 5 – 10 percent.
  • Combine errands. Several short trips from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as one trip covering the same distance when the engine is warm.

    Visit the ‘Drive Less. Save More.’ Web site for more information, www.drivelesssavemore.com.

    For more tips on saving gas, visit www.fueleconomy.gov, and for more information about transportation safety in Oregon, visit www.oregon.gov/ODOT/TS/index.shtml.

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