Kai McHugh, Brian O'Donnell, Garth Gibson, Paula Leonard, Carlyn Maguire and Sgt.Joe Hannigan.
The Donegal Road Safety Working Group (DRSWG) has launched a new awareness campaign encouraging drivers to use a mobile phone signal blocker pouch when driving.
“Research shows that mobile phone use by drivers, which is every bit as dangerous as drink driving, has reached epidemic proportions” the Donegal Road Safety Officer, Brian O’Donnell said.
He said that everyone appreciates the fact that mobile phones are a very important part of everyday life and that in an emergency situation they can save lives. However, he warned that when you are behind the wheel of a car or lorry, they can be a killer.
This new campaign targeting mobile phone use is a very practical plan. The 'Signal Blocker' is a mobile phone storage pouch that is lined with specialist material. When sealed inside the pouch, a mobile phone cannot receive any calls or alerts, thereby blocking the temptation for a driver to use or check their phone and eliminating the distraction that an alert can create. Large enough to fit all phones, the pouch also protects phones from scratching, which may occur if stored in the glove box of the vehicle.
Rather than leaving the mobile phone in the car switched on while driving and in a mode that is able to distract the driver, the signal blocker pouch can be used to store the phone in the car and will prevent the phone from ringing or beeping when driving thus avoiding distraction. All missed calls and messages can be picked up when the journey is complete.
The 'Signal Blocker' isn't just limited to use while driving, the pouch can be successfully used in any situation that you don't want your phone to ring or beep, be it at work or school, in the cinema, at a function, attending a sporting event, or even just to guarantee conversation at social events.
Brian O’Donnell said: “We are living in an age when being constantly connected seems to be the norm. Almost all of us have mobile phones, which we find difficult to switch off, even for a minute. Talking, texting or emailing on a mobile phone diverts attention from the road and puts other road users in danger.
“Many people who wouldn’t dream of drink-driving are using their mobile when driving, oblivious to the fact that the consequences can be just as serious. I would encourage all drivers to use the mobile phone pouch and remove the distraction from driving. The aim of the campaign is to improve safety, deter motorists from using their mobile while driving and help to further reduce the number of collisions on our roads.”
A signal blocker mobile phone storage pouch can be bought at any good mobile phone shop and the DRSWG is urging businesses to encourage their staff to use the mobile phone signal blocker and to get involved with this campaign making the roads safer for everyone.
“We need to change the behaviour of motorists and get the message across that the call or text can wait until the journey is complete” Brian O’Donnell said.