Transportation Safety Conference Program

Car crash on highway

KDOT Transportation Safety Conference

2023 Transportation Safety Conference Program

Pre-Conference Workshop

Monday, April 24, 2023

Registration Check-in and Continental Breakfast
7:30 a.m.

Workshop Session 1
8:30 a.m. - Noon

Courtroom Success

Speaker: John B. Kwasnoski, Professor Emeritus of Forensic Physics at Western New England University, Springfield, MA 

An overview of the skills that are needed to be a persuasive witness in DWI and drug-impaired crash cases, and a look at the psychology of being a witness and that of being a juror, an attorney, or judge.  The presentation goes well beyond the level of "look at the jury when you talk".  Includes examples from trial transcripts and strategies employed in actual cases and moves participants up the learning curve without the unpleasant experience of "learning the hard way".

Workshop Session 2
1:00 - 4:30 p.m.

High Risk Interdiction/Traffic Stops/K-9 Deployment

Speaker: Sheriff Lewis, retired as a Sergeant with the Maryland State Police 

Attendees will receive extensive power-packed instruction in the latest and safest approaches to motor-vehicle traffic stops designed to apprehend organized gang members, wanted fugitives and major drug-traffickers.  Through the eyes of real in-car camera footage, specialized instruction will be received in high-risk traffic stops and roadside interview techniques designed to detect deceptive behavior.

Instruction on proper canine deployment will be provided to attendees with special emphasis on identifying concealment methods being utilized by gang members and drug-traffickers, while learning the best practices for breaching these hides.

As Traffic Stops increase, so does the probability that an officer will interdict large shipments of drugs as they are being moved from one location to another. During these interdiction stops, officers are often confronted with potentially dangerous and/or deadly situations while being challenged more today than ever before.  Defiance is the new norm. 


Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Registration Check-in, Continental Breakfast and Exhibits Open
7:30 a.m.

Opening Remarks
8:30 a.m.

Vanessa Spartan, Chief of Transportation, Kansas Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Safety
Calvin Reed, Acting Secretary of Transportation, Kansas Department of Transportation
Susan DeCourcy, Regional Administrator at National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Richard Backlund, Division Administrator, Federal Highway Administration, Kansas Division
Michael Christopher, Program Manager, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
Keynote Address – Safe System Approach

9:15 - 10:00 a.m.

Safe System Approach

Tom Chapman, Member, National Transportation Safety Board

Concurrent Session 1
10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

High Risk Traffic Enforcement. We Must Re-Engage

Speaker: Mike Lewis, Organization

What is the Sign? Trivia Game

Speakers: Candice Breshears, State Public Information Officer Kansas Highway Patrol, Haley Dougherty, Planning/Engineering Manager Kansas Department of Transportation and Jenny Lancaster, Program Coordinator Events, CPS Instructor Kansas Traffic Safety Recourse Office Staff

CRASH! Reconstruction Case Studies 

Speaker: John Kwasnoski, Professor, Professor Emeritus of Forensic Physics at Western New England University, Springfield, MA

Regional Breakout KC Metro Area


Lunch and Plenary Session
11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Traffic enforcement is a team effort - who are the players?

Speaker: John Kwasnoski, Professor Emeritus of Forensic Physics at Western New England University, Springfield, MA


People Saving People - Transportation Safety Recognition Awards Presentation

Concurrent Session 2
1:30 – 2:30 p.m.


Safe Systems, Impaired Driving, Bikes & Peds

Speaker: Ivan Cheung, Senior Advisor to the Honorable Tom Chapman National Transportation Safety Board

Back to Basics: Work Zone/Connective Safety

Speakers: Nick Rogers, PCE Kansas Department of Transportation and Slade Engstrom, Slade Engstrom, PE, PTOE Senior Vice President TranSystems

Shared Risk & Protective Factor Approach to Driver Safety

Speaker: Sharon Gilmartin, MPH, Deputy Director at the Safe States Alliance

Regional Breakout North Central Kansas Salina and Surrounding Area

Concurrent Session 3
3:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Trauma Registry as Data Source, Trauma Scores

Speakers: Danielle Sass, Senior Epidemiologist Trauma Program Kansas Department of Health and Environment and Wendy O’Hare, Kansas Trauma Program Director Kansas Department of Health and Environment

ATVs and UTVs: What Are They and Are They Street Legal

Speakers: Chad Crittenden, Technical Trooper Public Resources Officer Kansas Highway Patrol and J.L. Riedel, Lieutenant Kansas Highway Patrol

Attitudinal Perception Survey Results & How to Market OP to Pick Up Drivers

Speaker: Jordan Garcia, President JNA Advertising

Regional Breakout Northeast Kansas Topeka and Surrounding Area

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Registration Check-in, Continental Breakfast and Exhibits Open
7:30 a.m.


Concurrent Session 4
8:30 - 10:00 a.m.

What is Driving the Rise in Vulnerable Road User Deaths in Kansas and Nationally?

Speakers: Jay Aber, WSP USA, Colin Clarke, Contra Costa Transportation Authority, Bobby Evans, KCMO, Adam Greenstein, WSP USA and Matt Messina, KDOT

Panel-Post Crash “The Golden Hour: Post-Crash Care, Collaboration, Limitations & Barriers

Speakers: Slade Engstrom, PE, PTOE Senior Vice President TranSystems, Rusty James, TranSystems, Nathan Sturchio and Chief Frank Williams Butler County EMS

Social Norming & Peer Influencing

Speakers: Heidi Garcia, MSE Director of Health Education Resource Office University of Kansas and Benjamin Meier, Prevention Program Director Mirror, Inc.

Regional Breakout Wichita Metro Area


Concurrent Session 5
10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

The Role of Crash Preventative Systems for Vulnerable Road Users

Speaker: Dr. Asad J. Khattak is Beaman Distinguished Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Get There Safe! - What Makes Rural Conditions and Laws Unique

Speakers: Michele Chavez, Management System Analyst Medical/Vision Unit & Driver Education Support Kansas Department of Revenue, Division of Vehicles and Tim Anderson, Breath Alcohol Unit Instructor, Kansas Highway Patrol

Regional Breakout Northwest, Southwest and South-Central Kansas
Regional Breakout Southeast Kansas

Lunch, Announcement of 2022 Transportation Safety Awards & Plenary Address
11:30 – 1 p.m.

Placing Safety Front and Center: Kansas Safety Corridors Pilot

Speaker: David Schwartz, PE  Kansas Department of Transportation