Over 1,200 elementary, middle and high school students statewide will be asking drivers and passengers this week to “Stop If You Love Me” as part of the traffic safety campaign of the same name to reduce risky driving behaviors.
Forty schools on four islands have elected to participate in “Stop If You Love Me” Week running from February 12-16. The “Stop If You Love Me” campaign is sponsored by Hawaii State Department of Education’s (DOE) Driver Education Program, DTRIC Insurance, and Par Hawaii.
During the safety campaign, the DOE Driver Education Program will work with student advocates to encourage drivers and passengers to eliminate dangerous driving behaviors such as cell phone use, texting, driving intoxicated, road rage and speeding. Students will be educated about the risks those behaviors present.
Through various activities at their schools, youth advocates will address the topic of dangerous driving habits with fellow students. These activities are meant to teach students and their families hazardous driving behavior risks the lives of not only those they love, but themselves as well. In addition to spreading messages on driver, passenger, pedestrian, and bicycle safety, students will distribute over 25,000 campaign items. They will also host presentations and sign waving events, and encourage parents to sign a pledge to eliminate dangerous behaviors.
“Two groups that influence a young person’s driving habits are their parents and their peers,” said Jan Meeker of the DOE’s Driver Education Program. “Each year, student advocates reach thousands of their family members and classmates with the safe driving message, and we hope to reinforce their call again this year.”
“The dangers of distracted and risky driving are well-known, and we need to encourage drivers and passengers to be mindful of that, especially with children riding with them in their vehicles or who walk and bike along our streets,” said DTRIC president and CEO Michele Saito. “DTRIC is honored to be a partner in this very important initiative. We can’t stress enough the message for all of us to Drive Aloha.”