Manager, Public & Government Affairs
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Senior Specialist, Public & Government Affairs
O: (918) 748-1074
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- Video of the two campaign Public Service Announcements (Password: Intexticated)
- To take the “Don’t Drive Intexticated” pledge, go to AAA.com/DontDriveDistracted
Are You ‘Intexticated?’
Tulsa's AAA Launches Initiative to Reduce Distracted Driving
April 19, 2019 – AAA Oklahoma launched a multi-year initiative in northeast Oklahoma this week to reduce deaths and injuries as a result of electronic device use by drivers. April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
“Don’t Drive Intoxicated – Don’t Drive Intexticated” is the theme of AAA’s multimedia traffic safety education campaign created to make distracted driving socially unacceptable. AAA Oklahoma unveiled the campaign in Tulsa Wednesday at Tulsa Community College West Campus (TCC).
Left to Right: Mark Madeja - AAA Oklahoma Public Affairs; Krista Norrid - St. John's Injury Prevention Trauma Specialist; Jared Peterson - AAA Oklahoma President; Matthew Sharpe - TCC Director of Risk Management; Melvin Murdock - TCC Chief of Police.
Campaign public service announcements are designed to help audiences understand that the consequences of using a smartphone while driving are the same as drinking and driving. The campaign targets drivers who would never consider drinking a beer behind the wheel, and yet, regularly engage with mobile devices that dangerously take their eyes, hands and minds off the road. The public is invited to take the Don’t Drive Intexticated pledge at www.aaa.com/dontdrivedistracted to join this lifesaving effort.
Parallel Drawn to Alcohol-Impaired Driving Campaigns
“It’s taken 50 years of public education to make alcohol-impaired driving shameful,” said Mark Madeja, AAA Oklahoma spokesperson. “Our efforts helped pass alcohol-impaired driving laws, increase enforcement, and, most importantly, shift public attitudes and behaviors toward drinking and driving.” Although much more still needs to be done, anti-drunk driving campaigns and related efforts have helped cut the number of alcohol-impaired crash fatalities in half since the 1980s, according to the National Institutes of Health.
“Through this latest initiative, AAA Oklahoma is committed to changing attitudes and behaviors surrounding the deadly problem of distracted driving, and we will continue this effort with our traffic safety partners as long as it takes,” Madeja said.
Poll Shows Oklahomans’ Support
A AAA survey last month (March 2019) of 602 Oklahoma drivers revealed the following thoughts and opinions on distracted driving:
- 77% of Oklahoma drivers surveyed strongly agreed that the dangers of using a smartphone for texting, emailing, and social media can be as serious as drinking and driving.
- 74% of Oklahoma drivers support a law banning all hand-held cellphone use while driving,
- 71% say they notice more drivers distracted by use of electronic devices now than two years ago.
- 63% are very concerned for their safety due to other drivers’ use of electronic devices.
According to crash facts provided by the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office, 8,645 crashes involved a distracted driver in 2017. In that same year, 243 people were seriously injured and 35 tragically lost their lives as a result of distracted driving.
Distracted driving kills an average of nine people and injures 1,000 each day, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It is the third leading driver-related cause of crash fatalities behind speeding and driving under the influence.* And these numbers likely underestimate the problem because most drivers do not admit to distracting cell phone use after a crash. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has conducted numerous studies regarding distracted driving that demonstrate:
- Drivers interacting with cell phones to perform tasks like texting or surfing the Internet are two to eight times more likely to be involved in a crash.
- Taking your eyes off the road for just two seconds doubles your chances of being involved in a crash.
- 59 percent of all teen crashes involve some form of driver inattention, and 12 percent of teen crashes involve cell phone use.
Tips to Resist Distracted Driving
- Put it away. Place your mobile device out of sight to prevent temptation.
- Know where you’re going. If using a navigation system, program the destination before driving.
- Pull over. If you have to call or text while on the road, pull off the road safely and stop first.
- Ask passengers for help. If riding with someone, seek their help to navigate, make a call or send a message.
- Be a good passenger. Speak out if the driver of your vehicle is distracted.
- Don’t be a distraction. Avoid calling or texting others when you know they are driving.
- Everyone should prevent being intexticated. Just as drivers need to pay attention, so do pedestrians and bicyclists. Never call, text or play games while walking or cycling.
Media outlets and reporters, please follow AAA Oklahoma on Twitter @AAAOKNews and help spread the word on this important traffic safety issue with the hashtag #DontDriveIntexticated
For more information visit AAA.com/DontDriveDistracted.