Road Safety News

New campaign highlights dangers of using a mobile while driving

Wednesday 18th June 2014

Blackpool’s road safety team has launched a new campaign which highlights the dangers of using a mobile phone while driving.

The campaign is based on research carried out by TRL which suggests that using a mobile to make a call slows reaction times by 46%, and that using a smartphone is a greater distraction than alcohol impairment at the legal driving limit.

The ‘Smartphone Stupid Driver’ campaign is running at the Houndshill Shopping Centre in Blackpool. At the seven day roadshow people will be asked to show their support for the campaign by signing a pledge to agree to put their phone away while driving. A short film highlighting the dangers is also being shown at the event.

Cllr John Jones, Blackpool Council’s cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “Smartphones have become part of our daily life, and it’s so tempting to just check Facebook or even text while you’re at the traffic lights or just as you’re driving along the road.

“Realistically, no call, text or photo is so important that you should risk your life for it, or the lives of others.

“This roadshow gives us the perfect chance to talk to members of the public and remind them about the importance of putting the phone down when you’re at the wheel.”

For more information about the campaign contact Kelly Gilmore from Blackpool’s road safety team on 01253 476182.  



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Stupid Phone! (Put it out of reach) Smart driver!
Robert - Dorset

Agree (10) | Disagree (2)

Maybe calling your target audience stupid means those who see it think "Well I’m not stupid" will in turn have the desired effect to stop them doing the "Stupid" thing and drive without the added distraction?
Stuart Rochdale

Agree (8) | Disagree (6)

I think it's fair enough in this context to make a point by showing the negative - after all 99% of public info ads do it to a greater or lesser extent. Having a message with some sort of impact will probably lead you down that route like it or not!
John Billington Room 9 Media

Agree (7) | Disagree (2)

It will be interesting to see the evaluation report for this intervention or through focus group work. Such an intervention should aim to change the wrongly perceived legitimacy of an action or behaviour that may result in a negative outcome. It should be devised and evaluated with that in mind. Does showing an image of someone doing the opposite to what you want them to do actually re-inforce what is perceived by some as a social norm? From what I see every day, most people don't use their smartphones whilst driving - but that doesn't make the news. A visual showing a driver putting the device "out of reach" before driving off is a more positive message. Would be worth comparing both images and asking people for their views. Either way I do think we have to take care not to re-inforce negative behaviour.
Robert - Dorset

Agree (8) | Disagree (0)

Calling your target audience stupid, yup that will work!
Duncan MacKillop, Stratford on Avon

Agree (9) | Disagree (13)