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“Park & ​​Write”: Asfinag campaign aims to reduce mobile phone use while driving

“Park & ​​Write”: Asfinag campaign aims to reduce mobile phone use while driving
“Park & ​​Write”: Asfinag campaign aims to reduce mobile phone use while driving

New motifs are intended to draw attention to so-called “Park & ​​Write” zones, where safe cell phone breaks are possible.

Asfinag, which commissioned the survey, therefore wants to launch a campaign to combat the use of smartphones while driving. New motifs are intended to draw attention to so-called “Park & ​​Write” zones where safe cell phone breaks are possible. The motorway holding company is investing around 400,000 euros in new bridge banners, posters on expressways and advertisements in the media and social media, announced Asfinag board member Hartwig Hufnagl at a press conference on Monday.

On Austrian motorways, it takes “on average just under four minutes to get to the next rest area where you can safely make a phone call or check your messages”.

  • On the subject: Number of road deaths in Austria at record low

Distraction: Using a cell phone while driving is equivalent to 0.8 per mille

A distraction caused by a cell phone in the car is equivalent to a blood alcohol level of 0.8 per mille, warns Christian Schimanofsky, Managing Director of the German Road Safety Board (KfV). The human brain is not designed for multitasking. “That means you are somewhat distracted, you are not fully focused on one activity when you are doing the other.” The risk of an accident is five times higher with a cell phone in your hand, and 23 times higher when writing messages while driving.

“Last year, 2023, we had a total of 569 accidents where the cause of the accident was distraction,” said Hufnagl. According to the survey conducted anonymously in May 2024, 60 percent use their smartphones in the car, and around half feel “uncomfortable” without a cell phone. “One in five even reads the news while driving […] and one in seven drivers writes while driving.”

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KfV and Asfinag agree that leaving your cell phone on silent while driving is the simplest solution to avoid accidents. There are currently 254 “Park & ​​Write” spaces, 59 Asfinag rest areas, 108 parking spaces and 87 rest stops available on the motorway network.

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