Distracted Driving Awareness
Every April, Distracted Driving Awareness Month calls attention to how distracted driving takes lives, devastates families, and hurts communities. Within the month, a week is devoted to targeting programs and community outreach. The free resources on this page support educators (including the fire service, community and civic groups, schools, and parents) in their community risk reduction and public education to stop distracted driving.
Every day across America, distracted and uninformed drivers pose a major threat to the safety and wellbeing of first responders who risk their own lives on roads and highways to assist those involved in traffic incidents. The Cumberland Valley Volunteer Firemen's Association Emergency Responder Safety Institute, creator of ResponderSafety.com, is working hard to tackle this community risk.
CVVFA recently sponsored a national survey of 1,000 drivers ages 25 years and older who drive with children. In it, parents rank texts, phone calls and children in the backseat as the top three driving distractions. Nearly two-thirds of respondents admitted to regularly or occasionally programming a navigation system while driving alone; that risky behavior dropped 20% when children were present in the car. Similarly, more than half of parents surveyed admitted to regularly or occasionally talking on the phone while driving, which dropped 13% when children were along for the ride. While backseat passengers certainly demand extra attention, the survey encouragingly found parents are less likely to be distracted by technology when driving with their children in the car. The survey was conducted by the National Safety Council (NSC) and funded by a FY19 FP&S grant to CVVFA, who released the results in honor of NSC's 2021 Distracted Driving Awareness Month in April. For more information, please see the survey’s press release.
Distracted Driving Resources on ResponderSafety.com
The “How to Give Effective Distracted Driving Presentations” webinar from ResponderSafety.com and EndDD.org, delivered by Joel Feldman, covers strategies for addressing the distracted driving problem, how to talk to students about the risks of distracted driving, and how to craft distracted driving public education programs to reach the wider community. The webinar pays particular attention to the high school level because young adult and teen drivers are at increased risk.
Backgrounder for Leadership on Public Education Resources for Safe Driving Practices at Emergency Response Scenes A briefing document for department, agency, and organization leadership on public education resources for safe driving practices when passing emergency response scenes available from ResponderSafety.com
Distracted Driving Awareness Poster A public education poster to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving, particularly to emergency responders working on the roadway, and promote safe driving behaviors to avoid distraction.
Distraction-Free Driving Graphic Featuring the Cumberland Valley Volunteer Fireman’s Association A social media post graphic.
“Don’t Be A ‘D’ Driver” Handout This “Don’t Be a ‘D’ Driver” public education handout from the Cumberland Valley Volunteer Firemen’s Association and the Emergency Responder Safety Institute explains how to prevent distracted driving and what to do when approaching an emergency scene on the roadway to protect responder and motorist lives.
How to Safely Pass an Emergency Scene A short video explaining how to safely pass an emergency scene on the roadway.
In Our Boots PSA: Joe Kroboth One-minute PSA featuring Joe Kroboth III, the former fire chief of the Volunteer Fire Company of Halfway, MD whose father, a Fire Police officer in the same department, was struck and killed in 1998 while directing traffic for a medevac helicopter landing on I-81.
In Our Boots PSA: Mike Cox One-minute PSA featuring Mike Cox, a firefighter who survived being struck in the 1998 Pennsylvania Turnpike Incident involving the Lionville Fire Department.
In Our Boots PSA: Steve Senn One-minute PSA featuring Steve Senn, an assistant fire chief who survived being struck in the 1998 Pennsylvania Turnpike Incident involving the Lionville Fire Department.
In Our Boots PSA: 2021 Struck By Stats 30-second PSA showing what it’s like for emergency responders to work close to high speed traffic and using struck-by fatality data for 2021.
Struck-By Survivor Stories What happens after an emergency responder is struck by a vehicle? Five emergency responders changed forever by a struck by experience tell their stories.
Take the Pledge to Drive Safely and Protect Emergency Responders! Avoid emergency scenes, move over and slow down, leave your phone alone, stay alert, follow traffic control instructions, and refrain from “D” driving. Download the pledge, sign it, and post in your home or on social media. #ISaveResponderLives
"It's No Picnic Out Here" PSAs A 30-second public service announcement reminding the public that responders are doing hard and dangerous work to keep roads safer and that they should slow down and give responders room to work safely.
Parents Should Always Drive as if Their Kids Are in the Car Graphics A social media post graphic.
ResponderSafety.com Push Card A push card of important safety messages for the public about what actions to take when approaching and passing an emergency scene on the roadway. The push card is appropriate for distribution at rest areas, service plazas, community events, community presentations, driver education schools, motor vehicle bureaus, and other driver information distribution opportunities. Printed copies of the push card are also available as our funding permits. Please use this link and list the following: Name, Address and Phone Number of Your agency as well as a contact person. Please advise how and where you intend to use the cards and the number requested.
Sarah’s Story A public service video describing the experience of a struck by incident from the perspective of a teen driver who hit an emergency responder.
Social Media PSA: Leave Your Phone Alone A short video PSA on distracted driving meant to be shared on social media.
Visitors Center Loop A video loop is to be used at Visitors Centers. It contains PSAs for: Slow Down Move Over, It’s No Picnic Out Here, Move It, and Leave Your Phone Alone.
What To Do When Approaching an Emergency Scene on the Roadway A customizable media advisory template to help PIOs and public educators get the word out about what to do when approaching an emergency scene on the roadway.
Distracted Driving Month Organizations
Additional distracted driving resources are available from these organizations.
EndDD.org (End Distracted Driving) is a campaign of the Casey Feldman Foundation. Casey was 21 when she was killed by a distracted driver in Ocean City, NJ. She was struck while walking in a crosswalk on a beautiful summer day. The distracted driver said he never saw her. Following Casey’s death her parents, Joel Feldman and Dianne Anderson, created EndDD.org and have worked to keep all of us safer on the roads from distracted drivers. Joel has personally given more than 900 presentations to about 200,000 students and adults. Joel’s talks range from schools to all types of businesses. EndDD.org provides speakers presentations, facts, and resources to end distracted driving.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Through enforcing vehicle performance standards and partnerships with state and local governments, NHTSA reduces deaths, injuries and economic losses from motor vehicle crashes.
National Safety Council
NSC sponsors Distracted Driving Awareness Month each year to educate drivers about the importance of attentive driving. In 2009, NSC became the first organization to call for a complete ban on all cell phone use for all drivers. 48 states plus the District of Columbia have enacted texting bans for all drivers, and 21 states plus the District of Columbia have passed legislation making it illegal to use a handheld cell phone for all drivers. The NSC website has distracted driving posters, videos, social media posts, and other materials for you to use.