More than 670 auto dealers across Canada ask for customers’ help to end distracted driving

Customers walking through the doors of their neighborhood auto dealership during March 2016 may be asked to do more than check out the latest vehicle models. They will also be encouraged to take a pledge against distracted driving—a dangerous and growing trend that is responsible for 4-million vehicle collisions a year in North America.

March 1 marks the official start of the 2016 Auto Dealers Against Distracted Driving Campaign across Canada, with 670 auto dealerships currently registered nation-wide to participate. By lending their name to the cause, auto dealers are joining forces in their communities to say: we are not okay with distracted driving.

Throughout the month of March 2016, customers who visit participating dealerships will be asked to make a personal pledge against the fatal behaviour and make a formal commitment to improve road safety by not driving distracted. Pledges from customers and dealership employees can also be submitted online at www.distractionfree.ca.

“This is our second year participating in the campaign and we’re hoping to build off of the great response we saw from our customers last year; our Applewood Kia location in Surrey, BC, was among the top dealers in the country with 618 individual pledges collected over the course of campaign month,” said Linda Thomas, a campaign champion for Applewood Auto Group. “It’s important we engage directly with our customers because we believe that the act of physically signing your name will encourage a real behavioural change. We hope our campaign will encourage them to think twice before reaching for their phone while behind the wheel.”

The campaign aims to educate drivers on the easy and simple solutions to resist the urge to drive distracted, such as pairing to blue tooth and securing potential distractions before starting a trip.