Allstate Launches Campaign Against Distracted Driving

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Take the Action Against Distraction Pledge to Show Your Commitment to Make the Roads a Safer Place to Drive

TORONTO, June 8 2010 – Allstate Insurance Company of Canada has launched its Action Against Distraction campaign and is working with schools and communities across the GTA to explain to teens that even the simplest distraction – texting, applying makeup, changing a CD, adjusting a GPS unit or even chatting with friends instead of watching the road – can lead to a fatal collision.

Driving while distracted is the cause of eight out of every ten collisions(1). As part of the campaign, Allstate has created a video of teens describing the craziest driving distractions they’ve seen and the Action Against Distraction online pledge, where young drivers and their parents can add their names and show their commitment to help stop distracted driving.

Young drivers in Ontario, Alberta, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are automatically entered to win an iPad when they take the Action Against Distraction pledge at goodhandsadvice.ca/distraction. An additional ballot is earned when shared with friends.

“Driving is about focus – if you aren’t focused on your driving, you put you and everyone around you at risk,” says Saskia Matheson, Allstate’s Director of Risk Management. “We are committed to keeping Canadian roads as safe as possible for all drivers, and we believe the Action Against Distraction campaign helps young drivers and their parents understand what’s at risk.”

According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, drivers aged 21 and under with less than six months of driving experience have more collisions, drive at higher initial speeds, follow the car ahead more closely and talk on their cell phones more than drivers with 10 or more years of driving experience. As well, Canadians aged 16 to 24 are more likely than their older peers to steer or brake to avoid a collision due to in-car distractions.

Other facts about distracted driving include:

  • You are 23 times more likely to crash when you drive distracted. When drivers take their eyes off the road for more than two seconds, crash risks double.
  • Inexperienced drivers under 20 years old have the highest percentage of distraction-related fatal crashes.
  • Distracted driving is the equivalent of driving after consuming four beers.
  • Taking your eyes off the road for five seconds while driving at 90 km/h is like driving the length of a football field – completely blind.
  • In Ontario, British Columbia, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan, and later this year in Manitoba, it is illegal for drivers to talk, text, type, dial or email using hand-held cell phones and other hand-held communications and entertainment devices. The Alberta government has recently put forward a similar cell-phone ban bill, which will be voted on this year.

To keep roads safe from distracted drivers, Allstate offers the following tips:

  • Pull the car over if you have to make a call or text.
  • Dropped something? Want to change the radio station or find your favourite song on your mp3 player? Wait until you stop.
  • Don’t know where you’re going? Be prepared and get everything ready before you get started. Enter the destination on your GPS before you start to drive.
  • If you feel sleepy, find a safe place to pull over and rest. If you’re hungry, wait until you get home or reach your destination to eat.

Through this campaign, Allstate hopes that both new and experienced drivers will take action against distraction and make a conscious choice to never partake in any activity that can distract you while driving.

About Allstate Insurance Company of Canada

Allstate Insurance Company of Canada produces and distributes home and auto insurance products across Canada. “The Good Hands Network(R)” enables consumers to contact Allstate through one of 93 community Agencies, directly online at www.allstate.ca and through the Customer Contact Centre at 1-800-allstate.