Who among us hasn’t picked up their phone at least once, just to “reply to a text real quick”? Are you aware that by doing so you are seriously endangering both your own life and the lives of other road users? Research has shown that as many as 91 percent of drivers use a mobile phone while driving, which increases the probability of an accident by up to 23 times. This is one of the most dangerous actions we can do while driving because even the simple act of replying to a message takes our attention away for five seconds, in a situation where even a hundredth of a second can mean the difference between life and death.
But it is obvious that we have become so addicted to mobile phones that being constantly available has become an imperative of modern life – we reply to messages from our cars, write emails or google the restaurant that we’re driving to.
Outdoor akzent has contributed in raising awareness of the issue with the help of the agency Señor, which created the “Be Smart: Don’t Type and Drive” campaign, with the support of the Ministry of the Interior. Billboards all over Croatia warn drivers that typing while driving turns their smartphone into a deathphone, a real weapon that can take someone’s life in a moment of carelessness.
“Outdoor roadside billboards are an ideal medium for this message because they warn drivers of the danger in the very place where a life-threatening offence occurs – that’s where the effect of this ad is greatest.” – in the words of the CEO of outdoor akzent, Gabriela Klarić.
Research has shown that using a mobile phone while driving is the same as having 1 per mille of alcohol in your bloodstream. Drunk driving carries a social stigma, and we hope that this campaign will also help raise awareness that typing on your mobile phone while driving is just as unacceptable.
On average, we spend 55 minutes a day texting, let’s try to make sure that we’re behind the wheel for zero of those minutes. The next time you hear the familiar “You’ve got a text” sound, wait until after you’ve pulled over – we’re sure it’s not a matter of life and death.