Think you can safely drive while using your cell phone to text or talk? Think again! In 2013, 40% of all collisions in Ottawa involved distracted driving.
Find out just how dangerous cell phone use and driving can be using the distracted driving simulator this weekend at two local malls.
The presentation is part of an education, enforcement and awareness campaign by Ottawa Police, the Canadian Automobile Association and Safer Roads Ottawa called Leave the Phone Alone. Participants will be given the chance to see first-hand how distractions affect their driving.
“Anything that takes your focus away from the road while driving is considered a distraction,” said Ottawa Police Sergeant Denis Hull of the East Division Traffic Unit. “Drivers still aren’t getting the message about how dangerous texting or talking while driving is.”
The most prevalent distraction to drivers is cell phone use. Distracted driving collisions are quickly becoming the leading cause of injuries and deaths on Ontario roadways. From 2009 – 2013, there were 28,283 distracted driving collisions, resulting in 6463 injuries and 18 fatalities in Ottawa.
Texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a collision than attentive drivers and the risk to drivers talking on phones is four times greater. The age group most at risk is drivers age 16 – 29.
Members of the public are invited to try the distracted driving simulator on the following dates and times:
- February 27 — St. Laurent Centre in front of the GAP store – 1 pm to 8 pm
- February 28 — St. Laurent Centre in front of the GAP store – 10 am to 5 pm
- March 1 — Bayshore Shopping Centre in front of the Apple store – 10 am to 5 pm
You can take the pledge at https://leavethephonealone.ca/
The Safer Roads Ottawa Program is a leading community partnership between Ottawa Fire Services, Ottawa Paramedic Service, Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa Public Health and the Public Works Department committed to preventing or eliminating road deaths and serious injuries for all people in the City of Ottawa, through culture change, community engagement, and development of a sustainable safe transportation environment.
Ottawa residents have identified traffic safety as a top priority. The Safer Roads Ottawa Program is committed to using available resources to make Ottawa roads safer for residents.