TGA Cross Insurance Agency Brings Distractology 101 Tour to the Pingree School to Educate Teen Drivers on Dangers of Distracted Driving
TGA Cross Insurance Agency is proud to bring the state-of-the-art Distractology 101 tour to the students at the Pingree School in South Hamilton during the week of February 4-8. Distractology 101 is an interactive program developed by the Arbella Insurance Foundation to teach new drivers the dangers of distracted driving. The campaign features a 36-foot-long, neon-yellow mobile classroom outfitted with high-tech driving simulators designed to give new drivers the chance to experience the perils of distracted driving, including texting while driving.
More than 3,000 people are killed each year in crashes involving a distracted driver and an estimated additional 416,000 are injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, sending or receiving a text takes a driver's eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field at 55 mph, blind.
“Distracted driving is a widespread epidemic among young drivers that continues to worsen, particularly as mobile devices become more prevalent, more advanced and more addictive,” said John Donohue, chairman, president and CEO of the Arbella Insurance Group, and chairman and president of the Arbella Insurance Foundation. “According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 800,000 drivers are using a hand-held cell phone at any given moment but only 57% recognize it as a serious threat to their safety. This lack of awareness and understanding is quite startling. It is our hope that Distractology 101 will continue to tackle this naivety head on and force drivers to once and for all break their mobile phone addiction while on the road.”
To date a total of 3,621 new drivers, meaning those that have been licensed less than three years or have a learner’s permit have completed the Distractology 101 training. In 2012, 97% percent of students surveyed said the experience was effective or extremely effective and 82% said they would recommend the experience to a friend.
“In just three years Arbella’s Distractology 101 campaign has made enormous strides in terms of combating distracted driving,” said Willie Surette of TGA Cross Insurance Agency. “The program’s mission is quite simple: to educate young drivers of the dangers of distracted driving and ultimately save the lives of teens living in communities such as South Hamilton. Research has indicated that this type of real life stimulation and education can truly help to change dangerous behavior and we at TGA Cross Insurance are proud to support this important mission.”
The Distractology driving simulator, based on Arbella-funded research conducted with the University of Massachusetts at Amherst (UMASS), will travel to various communities in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island during 2013, offering 45 minutes of simulated distracted driving to each participant.
During the driving simulator training — Distractology 101: A Crash Course on Distracted Driving — teens and other new drivers face a number of scenarios based on real-world examples, educating participants on how to anticipate hidden hazards, react to the road and avoid accidents. Participants also complete the online portion of the curriculum at www.DistractU.com and make a safe-driving pledge in order to complete the training.
About the Arbella Insurance Group and the Arbella Insurance Foundation
Established in 1988, the Arbella Insurance Group (www.arbella.com) is a company with more than $600M in revenue with approximately $1B in assets, headquartered in Quincy, Massachusetts. Arbella is a customer-focused regional property and casualty insurance company, providing personal and business insurance in Massachusetts and Connecticut, and business insurance in Rhode Island and New Hampshire. Arbella Insurance Group founded the Arbella Insurance Foundation in 2004. The mission of Arbella’s Foundation is to engage in activities and to support not-for-profit organizations that have a significant positive impact on the people and communities served by Arbella.
About TGA Cross Insurance Agency
TGA Cross Insurance is an affiliate of Cross Insurance, a family-owned, privately-held, independent insurance brokerage firm with a network of offices in Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. As part of the Cross Insurance network, TGA Cross offers its clients comprehensive business solutions, including risk management and loss control programs, executive risk management programs, commercial property and casualty coverages, surety bonding, personal insurance, executive benefits, employee benefits and HR services. For more information visit www.tgacross.com