Hard hitting air fresheners have been designed by a group of young people in Northern Ireland determined to stop people using their phones behind the wheel.
The group from St Patricks Grammar School in Downpatrick decided to take action after a number of serious accidents in the community.
The air fresheners show a picture of a cracked phone screen alongside the words No Distractions and #eyesahead.
Leading the group is Owen Edwards, 18, who explained why the students were so passionate about promoting road safety.
‘We have had two road deaths over the past year, and there have been parents who have died in accidents as well,’ he said. ‘It has been tough for everyone, it is a small community and it is hard to move on from that.’
Although phones weren’t necessarily involved in the fatal accidents, the group chose to focus their campaign around distractions young people face in the car.
The school has already designed a signal-blocking pouch for mobile phones, and it’s hoped these air fresheners will contribute towards keeping people safe behind the wheel.
‘I have been in cars with people who have been distracted by things on their phones, either messages or changing the songs,’ Owen explained.
‘You never think something bad is going to happen to you when you are driving, and I don’t think the shocking adverts you see on television are taken seriously; you think you are immune to them.
‘It only takes a small distraction to cause an accident.’
The group will distribute the air fresheners amongst their peers and hope they will act as a permanent reminder not to use your phone while driving.
Lucien, 15, summed up: ‘I hope this will make people more conscious when driving and make them realise it is their job to prevent accidents from happening.’
This project was supported by the Road Safety Trust.
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