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Drive 4 Pledges Day urges nationwide action to end texting while driving

Drive 4 Pledges Day urges nationwide action to end texting while driving

If you support the nationwide effort to end texting while driving, today is a day to take the fight to the next level.  With Drive 4 Pledges Day, the people behind the effective It Can Wait campaign are urging you to pledge to never text and drive and to ask others to do the same.

Sharing your commitment has never been easier, thanks to ItCanWait.com.  There, you can get resources to help you personalize your efforts and spread your message on social media. From profile and cover pics to hashtags, ItCanWait.com has everything you need to make this important cause your own.

Screen capture of the it-can-wait-dot-com website

As Transportation Secretary Foxx said, "Texting while driving claims too many lives, and raising awareness of this completely preventable tragedy is key to saving them.”

Even better? You won't be alone. 

You'll be joining AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile US, Verizon, and more than 200 other organizations who are all sharing their safety commitment and increasing awareness of the dangers of texting while driving. The Drive 4 Pledges Day effort will also include activities at Major League Baseball stadiums across the country, tweets from NFL players, and support from NHL and NBA teams. And all 112 regional councils of the Girl Scouts will participate.

Today's push is just the latest It Can Wait campaign to educate people about the dangers of texting and driving. Last month, the organization launched its strongest public service announcement ever.

We've all seen PSAs about this deadly epidemic--DOT has its own "Faces of Distracted Driving" series--but this one is different.

Unlike the typical 30-second or 60-second PSA, "From One Second to the Next" is a 35-minute, fully-formed documentary. It was directed by filmmaker Werner Herzog and features extended segments describing four different crashes caused by texting behind the wheel.

Two of the segments focus on people who have also participated in DOT's efforts to end distracted driving: Valetta Bradford, narrator of the 2011 "Faces of Distracted Driving: Xzavier Davis-Bilbo," and Reggie Shaw, a key speaker at DOT's first Distracted Driving Summit in September 2009. All of the segments are both gripping--because of the loss and guilt --and maddeningly frustrating.

Frustrating, because every one of these crashes was completely preventable. Frustrating because 49 percent of commuters--not teens--in a recent survey self-report texting while driving even though 98 percent of commuters surveyed acknowledge that texting while driving is dangerous. And frustrating because no text is worth the risk.

We at DOT thank the It Can Wait partners for their continued efforts to improve safety on our nation's roads. And whether you share your commitment, take the pledge, or just give a little extra thought to road safety, we thank you for your Drive 4 Pledges Day participation.