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Distracted Driving Awareness: U Text. U Drive. U Pay.


State Highway Safety Offices taking action by supporting a national campaign called: ‘U Drive. U Text. U Pay.’ This campaign is the first of its kind, providing strong anti-texting enforcement as well as a media outreach to educate motorists about the dangers of distracted driving. Find out here how each state is participating in the movement:

State, county, and local law enforcement officers are being urged by the Alabama Office of Highway Safety to set up a high-visibility enforcement effort from April 10th – April 15th.

Electronic message signage along highways and interstates will be utilized to educate motorists and support the campaign.

A statewide distracted driving campaign in the form of a brochure will be released and distributed by the Arizona Department of Public Safety.

Motorists are being reminded not to drive distracted by the Arkansas Highway Safety Office from April 10th – April 15th. The campaign will include a variety of ads which will reach drivers through television, radio, and even online. Electronic message signs will also be utilized across the state.

High visibility law enforcement operations are planned to be conducted by the California Highway Patrol across 250 agencies across the state. The campaign will be specifically enforced April 3rd, 8th, 17th, and 22nd across all law enforcement agencies. Local agencies have been instructed to target mobile phone use on additional days as well. A television ad campaign will aid the movement, as well as electronic message signs – strategically located in high-volume areas.

A statewide outreach is being planned in Colorado for the entire month of April, and is intended to span into the summer months. Teens have been asked to demonstrate distraction free driving in a video contest, and an initiative known as the ‘Red Thumb Reminder’ will encourage drivers to use red thumbnail polish to remind themselves not to text while driving.

Motorists across Connecticut are being reminded by the Connecticut State Highway Office that ‘One Text or Call Could Wreck It All’ via electronic message signs. Additionally, police have been asked to increase their distracted driving enforcement. The campaign is being taken one step further with a ‘Safe A Life Tour’ which will teach about the risks of distracted driving in 30 Connecticut high schools.

A blitz targeting distracted drivers will be conducted on April 11th in Delaware, and media will be used to spread the word for the duration of the month.

Washington D.C.
Law enforcement officers will be running a campaign from April 7th to April 14th in Washington D.C. In addition to an increase in traffic enforcement, an ad campaign will reach out through the radio, bus signage, electronic message boards, etc.

Drivers in Florida will be reminded to ‘Put It Down’ in a statewide campaign. The campaign will be supported by 226 law enforcement agencies who plan to increase enforcement throughout the month. Motorists will be educated via social media, web advertisements, digital message boards, and a statewide address from the Governor.

‘U Text. U Drive. U Pay.’ is a message that will by distributed online through social media by the Georgia Governor’s Office Of Highway Safety. The ad campaign will target young adults ranging in age from 18-34, particularly women. Georgia’s enforcement period will range from April 7th – April 15th.

A total of 4 County Police Departments are working in conjunction with the Hawaii Department of Transportation to raise awareness about the risks of distracted driving. Enforcement will be increased throughout the month of April.

A press conference is being held in Idaho to recognize an employer who created a no-phone policy for the drivers in his company vehicles.

A ‘Drop It And Drive’ awareness campaign will be launched in the state of Illinois to educate motorists about the statewide ban on hand-held cell phones. The campaign launched in the beginning of February and will extend into the spring. The media outreach includes radio, television, and outdoor ads as well as mobile digital banners. Programs such as ‘Operation Teen Safe Driving,’ ‘ Ford Driving Skills,’ and ‘P.R.O.M’ (Please Return On Monday) are also aiding in the awareness efforts.

A media outreach facilitated by the Iowa Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau is running a PSA on a total of 117 radio stations, and addressing the fact that distracted driving is just as dangerous on rural roads. A number of ads will also air during various sporting events, appear on billboards, and on electronic message boards.

A paid media press event and an increase in law enforcement will be utilized to fight distracted driving in the state of Kansas. The event will occur on April 17th, and the enforcement will span from April 18th – April 27th.

A statewide enforcement campaign against texting-while-driving will be broadcast on radio, electronic message boards, and spread via social media. Law enforcement in unmarked vehicles will be targeting texting drivers during the month of April.

Undercover SUV’s and vans will be utilized in Mine to catch texting and distracted drivers this month. A pledge targeted at teen drivers will also be introduced to radio stations across the state, to encourage motorists that their texts can wait.

An overtime enforcement of texting and driving laws will be conducted by the Maryland Transportation Authority in conjunction with the Maryland State Police and 28 additional law enforcement agencies this month. The sting will run from April 7th – April 15th. Educational ‘Park the Phone Before You Drive, Enforcement Underway’ materials will be distributed during the time of the campaign. Additionally, the agency will partner with AT&T to bring a Distracted Driving Simulator to area high schools.

A traffic enforcement program will be conducted by the Massachusetts Highway Safety Division and local police officers to step up the enforcement of distracted driving laws. This increase in surveillance will occur between April 10th – April 15th. Electronic message boards will also be used to spread the message.

The Michigan Office of Highway Planning will begin it’s Distracted Driving Awareness campaign by increasing enforcement of texting and driving laws in the month of April. Additionally, a large campaign will be launched to spread awareness of the issue and consequential safety risks.

Many activities have been planned for the month of April by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety and the Office of Traffic Safety. Enforcement of distracted driving laws will take place between April 11th – April 20th. Press conferences, commercials, and youtube videos will also be released to spread the word.

Mississippi’s Youth-Safe Driving Coalition has agreed to host an educational event at the state capital to raise awareness of the dangers involved with distracted driving. A number of printed promotional materials will also be distributed state-wide to educate motorists.

A major push towards a social media campaign against texting and driving will be launched in April. The message is intended to be shared with 20,000 Facebook followers. Extra enforcement of distracted driving laws will be conducted on April 14th.

A multimedia campaign will be launched by safety councils, school programs, and health departments in the month of April to teach teens about the risks of distracted driving.

A national ‘No Texting’ message will be spread along Nevada’s state hands-free law via a campaign by the Nevada Office of Traffic Safety. A law enforcement blitz will be conducted between March 31st – April 20th.

New Hampshire
Although New Hampshire already utilizes a year-round enforcement program against distracted driving, an additional ‘Operation Safe Commute’ program will also be utilized. Additional enforcement will randomly be conducted throughout the month by 72 different law enforcement agencies.

New Jersey
A campaign against distracted driving will be enforced between April 1st – April 21st in New Jersey. The program intends to educate motorists about the risks of distracted driving, while a total of 60 law enforcement agencies crack down on those who choose to text and drive. A grant will pay for 100 overtime hours in order to enable officers to increase their enforcement.

New Mexico
A campaign will be launched by the Traffic Safety Division of the New Mexico Department of Transportation via social media, print, and television/billboard to discourage motorists from driving distracted. New Mexico’s texting bill will begin on July 1st, 2014, and this campaign will also help to spread awareness about this law change. A DNTXT app is available in New Mexico to help drivers to shut off their phones when behind the wheel.

New York
A new campaign from the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee will ask a grand total of 500 law enforcement agencies to help step up enforcement when it comes to distracted driving laws in the month of April. Campaigns via social media, television, and message boards will help to spread the message regarding the uptick in enforcement.

North Dakota
Seven law enforcement agencies in North Dakota will team up to enforce distracted driving laws across the state. Motorists are reminded to drive without distractions with the following safety message – ‘Code for the Road. Follow the Rules. Follow the Law.’ – Don’t text and drive.

Drive Aware Oklahoma has teamed up with the Oklahoma State Highway Office to promote awareness when it comes to the dangers of distracted driving through educational events located in Tulsa and Oklahoma City.

An approximated $225,000 in Pennsylvania state funds have been allocated to help PennDOT to conduct a distracted driving media campaign. Ads will be found on the radio, in public venues, and online. The tagline stating, ‘Just Drive – Distractions Can Wait.’ A total of 300 law enforcement agencies will work together to increase enforcement of distracted driving laws from April 10th – April 15th.

Rhode Island
Social media is being leveraged by the Rhode Island Department of Transportation Office on Highway Safety to remind distracted motorists – specifically teens – of the dangers involved with texting and driving. Schools and a total of 15 police departments will work together to enforce the movement. A partnership is also being explored by a Rhode Island town to create the first town-wide “no texting-while driving zone.”

Efforts to teach the importance of safe driving are being implemented by the Tennessee Governor’s Highway Safety Office this month. A media campaign is intended to spread awareness via social media and radio. Tennessee Highway Patrol will also come together to enforce distracted driving laws during the month of April.

The Texas DOT has launched a Talk/Text CRASH awareness campaign on billboards, at gas stations, and on transit busses to educate the public of the dangers of distracted driving. Schools will distribute educational materials, and wristbands to remind motorists that their texts can wait. Additionally, an increase in enforcement of texting and driving laws will take place on April 17th.

Extra enforcement, a media campaign, and signage from the Highway Safety office in conjunction with local law enforcement officers will be distributed to increase awareness when it comes to distracted driving, and the dangers involved with that particular behavior.

A ‘Drive Smart’ event in Virginia will highlight the dangers of driving distracted. Additionally, agencies and groups will be able to download a ‘Distracted Driver Toolkit’ to promote safe driving.

Over 100 law enforcement agencies have agreed to come together to focus on an April distracted driver campaign. Messages will be placed on the electronic message boards statewide to alert motorists of the increase in enforcement.

West Virginia
A distracted driving law enforcement blitz will be conducted in West Virginia from April 4th – April 13th. A ‘Turn if off, put it down. – Just drive.’ message will be broadcast across the sate to raise awareness of the blitz. Additionally, a TextLimit app will be made available to all residents of West Virginia.

Radio stations in Wyoming have teamed up across the state to spread awareness about Distracted Driving Awareness month. Schools are asking their students to sign a pledge to drive without distractions.

Colorado DOT
Washington Post


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