Thunder Bay District Health Unit Shares Texting Awareness Video

Increasingly texting is a social norm
Increasingly texting is a social norm

Dangers of Texting Shared by TBDHU

THUNDER BAY – LIVING – Decreasing texting and driving on the radar in Thunder Bay. Students at Lakehead University are being asked to gauge the impact of a powerful new video intended to raise awareness about the tragic ripple effect a serious car crash resulting from distracted driving can cause. The “Last Words” video is the beginning of a new campaign aimed at young drivers to reduce texting and driving.

The video will be shown prior to the holiday block buster movies expected to attract large numbers of teens and young adults playing at Silver City in Thunder Bay during the month of December.

“Last Words” demonstrates how other people and the people you love can be affected if you choose to text while driving.

“In the last few years a lot of attention has been paid to the growing problem of distracted driving. And for good reason,” stated Judi Marton, Public Health Nurse. ”We hear all the stories, or see for ourselves, the rather unnerving vision of a driver texting while driving.”

In Canada, the leading cause of death and injury to 16-24 year olds is motor vehicle collisions with teenagers 16-19 at the highest risk of death per kilometer. Evidence is telling us that distracted driving has become an increasing factor in collisions. In 2013, the Ontario Provincial Police noted that distracted driving surpassed both impaired and speed-related fatalities. Texting while driving is a key contributor to driver distraction that needs to stop. For this reason, Thunder Bay District Health Unit together with the Community Traffic Awareness Committee has planned a 2-year education campaign to reduce texting and driving aimed at youth and their parents. The Fort William Rotary Club is also supporting this important project.

“I believe that organizations working together on a comprehensive approach that involves education, enforcement and public engagement can reduce distracted driving,” states Ryan Love, Traffic Technologist, City of Thunder Bay

The campaign will help remind drivers that they need to focus on the road and show passengers why they need to ask their drivers to stop talking or texting on their hand held phones. “I don’t text and drive” peel and stick decals for your car window can be picked up from the Health Unit and Thunder Bay Police station and will be distributed at community events. More information on texting and driving is available TBDHU.COM or by contacting Judi Marton at 625-8848.

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