Tomorrow, Sept. 19, has been proclaimed as “Drive 4 Pledges Day,” in the City of Altus to recognize the 2013 National No Text and Drive Pledge Day and to raise awareness of the dangers of texting while driving. Altus drivers are encouraged to take the pledge to not text and drive, and then put their cell phones away while behind the wheel - “It Can Wait.” All wireless users can take the pledge by texting “okpledge” to 464329 on Thursday.
Vice Mayor Rick Henry signed the proclamation on Tuesday, Sept. 17, with the AT&T Oklhaoma Regional External Affairs representative Deano Cox, and representatives of the Altus Chamber of Commerce and Tamarack Retirement Center, at the Val Verde Dental Associates office in Altus.
“There are over 200 organizations in Oklhaoma participating in the pledge,” said Cox. “And every school in Southwest Oklahoma is participating.” Cox explained that it isn’t just AT&T who is supporting the movement, but all major carriers across the nation. “The main thing is to bring awareness not to do it. If we save one life then it’s worth it.”
The City of Altus holds the health and safety of its teenagers and adults as a chief concern. Through ItCanWait.com, Facebook, text-to-pledge, tweet-to-pledge and events, more than 1.8 million people have committed to never text and drive. 98 percent of American commuters know sending a text or email while driving is not safe. Nearly 50 percent of commuters text while behind the wheel, where more than 40 percent of commuters who text while driving reported the activity as being a habit. A driver that sends a text message while driving not only jeopardizes his or her safety, but also the safety of passengers, pedestrians, and other drivers.
Take the pledge on Thursday to not text and drive. “It can wait.”