Washington, D.C. – FocusDriven, a new organization devoted to raising awareness of the dangers of distracted driving, has been launched in the U.S. It will be led by Jennifer Smith, an outspoken advocate since her mother was killed in 2008 by someone talking on his cell phone while driving.
FocusDriven is a direct outgrowth of the national Distracted Driving Summit in Washington, D.C. in September 2009, called by U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. The two-day meeting brought together affected families, law enforcement, researchers, public officials and others. Since then, family members of distracted driving victims have worked to establish an advocacy organization with support from the Department of Transportation and the National Safety Council.
A year ago, the National Safety Council became the first organization to call for a nationwide ban on cell phone use while driving.
FocusDriven is modelled after Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), which uses advocates who have experienced the consequences firsthand to change society’s attitudes toward drinking and driving. FocusDriven also hopes to provide victim support, as well as expand its mission to include education and the evaluation of new technologies.