ATLANTA, Dec. 14, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Teens from Atlanta and throughout the state of Georgia are being invited to help spread the word about the need to buckle up for safety in the third annual Drive Safe Atlanta PSA Contest. The contest, sponsored by The National Road Safety Foundation in conjunction with the Atlanta International Auto Show, which runs from March 20 – 24, 2019, invites teens ages 13 through 19 to submit ideas for a 30-second public service announcement about seat belts, which experts say are the most effective lifesaving tool in the event of a crash.
The winner will receive $2,000 and an Emmy Award-winning director will come to his or her school make the winning concept into a finished TV public service announcement that will debut at the Atlanta International Auto Show before airing on more than 150 TV stations nationwide. One runner-up will receive $1,000.
Teens who live in Georgia are invited to enter by sending a script or a descriptive paragraph for a TV ad that reminds teens and people of all ages to always buckle their seat belts. Entries are being accepted through Feb. 28, 2019. All contest entrants will receive two free tickets to the Atlanta International Auto Show.
"Today's cars are safer than ever, with many innovations that help avoid crashes and protect occupants, but the seat belt continues to be one of the most effective safety devices in the event of a crash," said Shayne Wilson, President of the Metro Atlanta Automobile Dealers Association and Show Manager for the Atlanta International Auto Show.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that nearly half (48%) of passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in 2016 were unrestrained. More than half of teen drivers killed in crashes and more than 60% of teen passengers killed in crashes were not wearing seat belts. In Georgia, the number of teens not using seat belts is closer to 65%. NHTSA says the use of seat belts in passenger vehicles saved an estimated 14,668 lives of occupants ages 5 and older in 2016.
"We hear so much about distracted driving due to cellphones and texting," said Harris Blackwood, Director of the Georgia Office of Highway Safety. "But those same distractions can cause us to forget the first rule of safe driving for drivers and passengers alike – buckle your seat belt. The seat belt has been proven, over and over, to be a critical factor in saving lives in traffic crashes."
"We hope Drive Safe Atlanta will engage young people to spread the seat belt message and change behavior, not only among teens but among all drivers," said Michelle Anderson of The National Road Safety Foundation, a non-profit that promotes safe driving behavior. "And an important part of the message is everyone needs to be buckled, whether in the front or rear seat."
Information about the Drive Safe Atlanta Contest, including contest rules and entry form, can be seen at www.nrsf.org/teenlane/contests/drivesafeatlanta
The National Road Safety Foundation, Inc. (NRSF) is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit charitable organization that for more than 55 years has been dedicated to reducing crashes, deaths and injuries on our nation's highways by promoting safe driving habits through greater public awareness.
NRSF produces documentaries, educational programs and public service campaigns for broadcast and for use in safety, educational and enforcement programs by police, teachers, traffic safety agencies, healthcare professionals, youth advocacy groups and other grass-roots related agencies, as well as federal, state and local government agencies. NRSF programs, which are free, deal with distracted driving, speed and aggression, impaired driving, drowsy driving, driver proficiency and pedestrian safety. The Foundation also works with youth advocacy groups and sponsors contests to engage teens in promoting safe driving to their peers and in their communities. For information or to download free programs, visit www.nrsf.org or www.teenlane.org.
About the Atlanta International Auto Show. The 2019 Atlanta International Auto Show is scheduled for March 20-24, 2019. This showcase of over 500 new 2019 import and domestic cars, light trucks, vans and sports utility vehicles will have over 23 different manufacturer lines represented. It is the one of the largest events of its kind in the Southeast and the largest consumer show held annually at the Georgia World Congress Center.
David Reich, 212 573-6000
SOURCE The National Road Safety Foundation