|I have written in the past about the increasing problem of traffic safety and collisions between vehicles and wildlife.
Oregon experiences a higher rate of animal-vehicle collisions than any other West Coast state. Nearly 6,000 vehicles in Oregon crashed into wild animals last year. The average insurance cost from such collisions: $4,135.
Last session I sponsored HB 4130 which appropriated funds to Department of Transportation for wildlife corridor projects. Before the session ended, those monies were approved. And now in a separate program, you too can support wildlife and traffic safety with a new Oregon license plate.
The “Watch for Wildlife” license plate will be available for purchase at all DMV locations starting May 4, 2022. Plates can also be ordered when a vehicle is purchased at an Oregon dealership. For more information about Oregon specialty license plates and how to get your own Watch for Wildlife plate please visit www.oregon.gov/odot/dmv.
The plate raises funds for Oregon Wildlife Foundation through an additional $40 donation when DMV issues, renews or replaces the plates. This is in addition to any other fees that normally apply. I understand there will be an online auction for the first 20 plate numbers.
Wildlife move throughout their habitat for food, shelter, and to find mates. In that regard, I suppose they are much like people! The roads and highways crisscrossing Oregon make that a dangerous and sometimes fatal journey. Proceeds from the sale of this license plate are dedicated to projects that provide safe passage to wildlife of all kinds throughout Oregon.