ST. GEORGE – The City of St. George is set to launch a large scale distracted driving campaign beginning with a press conference to be held this week of Thanksgiving. The goal of the campaign is reduce the number of accidents involving distracted driving.
The first phase of the campaign will create awareness of the epidemic that is distracted driving and how it affects the St. George community. The second phase will focus on enforcement efforts that are scheduled to begin January 2014.
A press conference open to the public will be held Tuesday at 11 a.m. in the parking lot across from Dixie Rock on Red Hills Parkway. City officials addressing the public will include Mayor Dan McArthur, Police Chief Marlon Stratton and Erik Sorenson, president of Sorenson Advertising, the city’s partner overseeing the launch of the campaign.
“This is an epidemic that is affecting our community,” McArthur said. “St. George wants to lead the charge in the state of Utah to help save lives and avoid the pain and tragedy that results from driving distracted.”
An estimated 421,000 Americans are affected each year by distracted driving and this problem hits close to home. There have been several incidents involving distracted driving in St. George and the problem is growing.
The press conference comes over one of the most dangerous driving weeks of the year. When most driving awareness campaigns are focused on drinking and driving, the City of St. George is targeting distracted driving because of similarities in driving patterns and their ability to cause accidents.
Following the press conference, a campaign will be launched on multiple media. A website will be launched as well as a social media campaign where residents can become part of the solution by signing a pledge that they will not drive distracted.
About Distracted Driving
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of people killed in distraction-affected crashes was 3,328 in 2012. An estimated 421,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver. Currently 11 percent of all drivers under the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crash. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted.
- When: Tuesday, Nov. 26, 11 a.m.
- Where: The parking lot across from Dixie Rock on Red Hills Parkway
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- Victim’s family brings ‘No Texting’ traffic signs to St. George
- Distracted driver triggers three-car accident, two sent to hospital
- Health Department cautions: Avoid drowsy driving
- Woman arrested in connection with fatal auto-pedestrian accident
- UPDATE: Names of victims in pedestrian-auto accident released, police seek witnesses
- One of two pedestrians in morning accident dies
- Two pedestrians collaterally injured in two-car collision
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