Thursday, April 29, 2010
Put down the phone
Ready to do your part on Friday to end distracted driving?
Then put down that cell phone.
No other than Oprah Winfrey is behind the drive to make April 30 the first national "No Phone Zone Day."
Joining her push are the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), National Organizations for Youth Safety (NOYS), FocusDriven, SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) and RADD, the Entertainment Industry's Voice for Road Safety.
How about joining in as well?
Again, just don't use your phone for talking or texting while driving. If you need to make a call, pull over.
Oprah and her Harpo Studios are launching a new public service announcement campaign to focus on the fact that distracted driving kills about 6,000 Americans each year.
It will also honor the victims of distracted driving.
"A call or text isn't worth taking a life," Winfrey said recently.
She may be stating the obvious, but she's right. And she is pushing to make cars a no-phone zone. Again, good idea, at least when you're driving.
Tomorrow, The Oprah Winfrey Show features a live episode focused on ending distracted driving. The "No Phone Zone" public service announcement campaign will be run during the show.
Maybe someone with her pull can finally make a difference. One can only hope.
If you'd like a few stats to back up the importance of this campaign, consider that a 2008 NHTSA study found that at any given moment during the daytime, more than 800,000 vehicles are being driven by someone using a hand-held cell phone.
A 2005 study for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reported that drivers are four times less likely to get into accidents serious enough to cause injury when they turn off their cell phones while behind the wheel.
If you want more information on "No Phone Zone Day," check out www.oprah.com/nophonezone.
You can learn more about distracted driving at www.distraction.gov.