May 17, 2010
FREDERICTON (CNB) - Awareness of driver distraction will be the focus this summer, as the provincial government and the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) join together to deliver a New Brunswick-specific edition of IBC's award-winning tour Be Smart. Be Safe.
Details on the initiative were announced today in conjunction with the launch of Canada Road Safety Week, May 17 - 24.
"We are pleased to be part of this campaign, as part of our ongoing efforts to make New Brunswick safer," said Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General John W. Foran. "With distractions all around us, and new technology available in vehicles, it is more important than ever to remind drivers to keep their attention on the road."
Two student ambassadors will visit community events throughout the province, profiling the dangers that occur when drivers are distracted. They will encourage people to try out IBC's driving simulator, which tests driver reactions to a variety of scenarios, show them the effects of distraction, and hand out educational materials.
"Studies indicate that 80 per cent of collisions are the result of driver distraction," said Bill Adams, vice-president, Atlantic, IBC. "That is why we believe it is important to bring our interactive road safety awareness campaign to all New Brunswickers, as part of IBC's support of the New Brunswick Highway Safety Strategy."
The simulator features an actual-size driver's seat, gas pedal and brake, steering wheel, dashboard and wide video screen. Drivers see how well they can handle the vehicle while driving in adverse weather, avoiding road hazards, and handling distractions.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Meghan Cumby, communications, Department of Public Safety, 506-444-5267; Leah Sanford, community relations co-ordinator, Insurance Bureau of Canada, 902-429-2730 extension 226.