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Hingham Awarded For Traffic Education, Going 12 Years Without a Pedestrian Fatality

Hingham resident and volunteer Courtney Palek also received the “Community Traffic Safety Hero Award.”

The Hingham Police Department received two awards this week: a Gold Award from AAA Southern New England for their traffic education and enforcement programs and the other for going 12 years without a pedestrian fatality.

Hingham Police Traffic Sgt. Steven Dearth said these two awards are based on 2011 efforts.

Gold Awards were presented to only three police departments, with Hingham being the only local department to receive their highest award. The Gold Award is “in recognition of outstanding achievements in traffic safety and continuing efforts to educate and protect the citizens of Hingham”.

AAA recognized the Hingham Police Department for their traffic safety community programs and efforts including: Gas Pump Buckle Up Stickers, Designated Driver Program, Child Passenger Seat Installation Program, work with the Hingham High School S.A.A.D. group, work with Hingham Senior Center by hosting AAA’s Older & Wiser Driver seminar, and enforcement efforts such as conducting Sobriety Checkpoints with the State Police and several OUI Saturation Patrols throughout the year.

The awards are presented annually to community police departments that organize and implement traffic safety projects in their community.

The awards were presented by Mary Maguire, AAA Southern New England’s Director of Public and Legislative Affairs, to Police Chief Michael J. Peraino and Dearth and Dearth.

The Hingham Police were awarded a Gold Award for their 2010 efforts and a Bronze Award for their traffic safety efforts in 2009. These new awards will be displayed in the police station lobby.

Hingham resident and volunteer Courtney Palek also received the “Community Traffic Safety Hero Award,” for her work in arranging for officers to visit nine Hingham preschools during September’s National Child Passenger Safety Week.

Palek began as an advocate after she and her three children were struck head on by a repeat drunk driver in 2009 on Summer Street in Hingham.

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