“Complacency Is Killing Us.” National Distracted Driving Campaign Aims To Debunk Multi-Tasking-While-Driving Myth

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Multi-tasking as a driver is a myth and National Distracted Driving Month in April is an effort to draw attention to this national epidemic. Local non-profit, PADD.org or People Against Distracted Driving wants you to participate in a Walk of Remembrance on Saturday April 15, 2017 to build awareness.

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Losing a daughter to a distracted driver in 2012 was the inspiration for PADD.org (People Against Distracted Driving) and for the education mission that followed, says Mike Kellenyi.

“Losing a daughter to a distracted driver in 2012 was the inspiration for PADD.org (People Against Distracted Driving) and for the education mission that followed,” says Mike Kellenyi, Founder of Nikki’s Foundation People Against Distracted Driving. In the five (5) years since Nikki’s death, Mike and the PADD organization have implemented legislation, installed countless physical and digital signs, instructed seminars, counseled families and dedicated their lives to insuring our safety.

Although pockets of progress have been made, data proves that we have a long way to go to course correct a national epidemic:

  • According to the NHTSA accidents resulting from distracted driving from texting are 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.
  • Over 40,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2016. This is a 6% increase from 2015 and a 14% increase from 2014. 2016 was the deadliest year on our roadways since 2007.
  • 4.6 Million people were injured in roadway accidents and required medical attention in 2016. This is 7% higher than the count in 2015. The cost associated with these accidents is estimated to be $432 Billion.
  • According to a National Safety Council survey (released Feb 2017), 47% of adults (over 18) admit to texting while driving by either manually texting or via voice controls.
  • According to Deborah A.P. Hersman, National Safety Council President and CEO, “our complacency is killing us.” Multi-tasking in a moving vehicle is a myth.

April is National Distracted Driving Month and on Saturday, April 15, 2017 PADD will host its annual Walk Of Remembrance in Washington Township Lake Park. The date for the Walk marks the fifth (5th) anniversary of Nikki Kellenyi’s passing from the actions of a distracted driver.

National Sponsors for this year’s Walk of Remembrance mark a milestone for PADD and an energized level of support to build awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. Sponsors include Musselman’s Apple Sauce, Venturini Motor Sports, the Philadelphia Union MLS team, New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Group and House of Gamez.

Activities in Washington Township Lake Park will include a 1K Walk, Venturini Motor Sports NASCAR and ARCA assets presented by Cherry Hill native and winning driver Tom Hessert, Philadelphia Union U of Tour Experience, Musselman’s Apple Sauce sampling, House of Gamez interactive video game experience, as well as, an array of local vendors with a sampling of Washington Townships premier businesses.

Registration for the Walk will be available at Washington Township Lake Park on Saturday, April 15th beginning at 8:00am. Mike Kellenyi and Signature Sponsors will make remarks from 9am – 9:20am. The Walk will begin at 9:20. After the Walk Musselman’s, the Philadelphia Union and House Of Gamez will be on hand for entertainment.

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The mission of PADD is to end injury and death caused by distracted driving. PADD was founded by Mike Kellenyi and his wife who lost their daughter as a victim of a distracted driving crash. Distracted driving remains the leading cause of death in teens. There are tips and tools that are available to teens and parents to end this epidemic. For more information, please visit http://www.padd.org

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Cindi Sutera
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