Think before the next time you want to text while driving -- the U TXT UR NEXT campaign is spreading through Fairfield.
The Fairfield Police Explorers have teamed up with State Farm Insurance to make the roads safer in town by combatting distracted driving.
The Explorers and the police department were awarded a $32,500 State Farm grant to embark on the anti-distracted driving campaign by local State Farm agent Steve Boyle on Tuesday.
According to Boyle, distracted driving causes more than 200,000 motor vehicle accidents a year.
“[Distracted driving] is a very, very serious issue that’s plaguing our community,” Deputy Police Chief Chris Lyddy said. “State Farm is helping us get the message out.”
The grant money, which the Fairfield Explorers had to compete with several hundred other applicants to secure, will be used to create and execute an “aggressive media campaign” to spread awareness about distracted driving, Lyddy said.
To date, the police department and the Explorers have collected more than 1,000 pledge cards from people in the community who have promised not to text while driving.
“Texting while driving is a choice,” Police Chief Gary MacNamara said. “What we’re trying to do is get people to choose not to text.”
Explorer Joey Bairaktaris agreed. “We hope the program goes far.”