The dangers of texting while driving are highlighted in a new THINK! campaign launched last week by road safety minister Jim Fitzpatrick after research showed that 30% of young drivers admitted to texting at the wheel.
Using a mobile phone at the wheel is considered the second most unacceptable driving behaviour among motorists with 93% agreeing that texting while driving is dangerous. However, 12% of all motorists admit to texting while driving.
The new radio advert features a driver’s voice spelling out a text message followed by the harrowing sound of a car crash.
An online ‘driving challenge’ game – which demonstrates how using a mobile at the wheel can completely distract the driver – is being circulated online via social networking communities and entertainment sites. In addition, the THINK! TV ad will be returning to screens to remind callers to ‘kill the conversation’ as soon as they realise that someone is driving.
Jim Fitzpatrick said: "It doesn’t matter how good a driver you are, if you text while driving then you cannot be giving the road your full attention.
"The message that mobile phones and driving should not mix is getting through to the majority of drivers but some people are still needlessly risking their own lives and putting others in danger for the sake of a text or a call.
"Our message to all drivers is simple: Don’t use your mobile phone when you’re driving."
The new radio advert will launch on Monday 4th May and is particularly targeted at young drivers.