NASCAR Driver Offers Safety Tips for Ohio Motorists
 
COLUMBUS (September 28, 2011) - NASCAR Nationwide Series driver Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.  has joined the Ohio Department of Transportation’s (ODOT) “Every Move You Make, Keep it Safe” roadway safety campaign as the voice of two radio public service announcements (PSAs) airing this September.
 
The 30-second PSAs, which are focused on roadway departure and intersection safety, were made possible with support from Nationwide Insurance and the Ohio Association of Broadcasters.  Drivers can hear the PSAs on their local radio stations and listen online by visiting www.everymove.ohio.gov
 
Stenhouse, Jr. who races the Number Six Blackwell Angus Beef and Cargill Ford Mustang tells drivers, “I’ve seen too many crashes both on and off the track. On Ohio’s rural roads, fatigue, alcohol, speeding and distractions can cause drivers to leave the road and hit fixed objects such as trees and utility poles.” 
 
According to ODOT, more than 50 percent of all fatalities in Ohio involve roadway departure crashes.  These crashes occur when drivers and riders leave the road and hit fixed objects such as trees and utility poles, or they leave the travel lane and sideswipe another vehicle or hit it head on. About 66 percent of roadway departure crashes take place in rural Ohio. 
 
“Many of these deaths could be prevented through safer driving habits such as always wearing a seatbelt, driving sober and paying attention to the road,” ODOT District 3 Deputy Director Allen Biehl said.
 
In another PSA, Stenhouse says, When driving on Ohio’s roads, we all need to give driving our full attention – especially at busy intersections where nearly 40 percent of serious injuries happen.” 
 
According to odot, these crashes are common due to the complexity of intersections, which have multiple crossing and turning movements. Young drivers are particularly vulnerable. Drivers age 15 to 25 are involved in about 25% of all intersection fatalities and 35% of all intersection crashes.
 
“Every Move You Make, Keep It Safe” aims to educate Ohioans on how to use the roads safely – whether behind the wheel, behind the handlebars or on foot. Crashes cost Ohio nearly $13 billion a year.  ODOT’s new safety campaign is linked to the state’s overall goal of reducing roadway fatalities 5 percent by 2015.  With nearly 300,000 crashes across Ohio in 2010 and more than 1,000 deaths, ODOT could help save 150 lives on Ohio’s roadways. Safety Tip Cards can be found at: www.everymove.ohio.gov