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Put the Phone Away: April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

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Put down the phone and listen up! April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. A study shows that almost 100% of teens agree that texting and driving is dangerous, however half admitted to do it. It only takes a couple of seconds being distracted, to get into an accident. DO NOT TEXT AND DRIVE.

History of Distracted Driving Awareness Month

On November 25, 2008, Shelly Forney’s life completely changed when a driver mistakenly looked at their cell phone while in control of an SUV. Shelley’s nine year old daughter Erica was riding her bike home, just a few pedals away when she was struck by the car head on. Erica passed away two days later on Thanksgiving.

At the time, texting and distracted driving was not covered in the media, or described as a pandemic. While the average person suffering this horrid event would curl up in pain, Shelley took action. She knew that the story of Erica could happen to another family, and change their lives forever. If she could tell her story to enough people, maybe she could save a life. Shelley became an independent contract speaker and founded Focus Driven, a distracted driving advocacy group. She would continue to speak to audiences for the next ten years. She appeared on Oprah, Larry King Live, and other shows or events. Erica’s story was noticed by Representative Betsy Markey, and in 2010, she was invited to Washington DC to speak to a national safety conference.

There are so many stories like Shelley and Erica’s that happen far too often in today’s world. In 2018, 4,637 people died from car crashed due to cell phone and electronic device use. April is a time to decrease that number. Put the phone away, you might be able to save a life. Join us this month and make the extra effort to avoid using phones on the road and be aware of safety measures.

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