Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Course at Neshaminiy Mall to challenge distracted drivers

Families will be urged to take pledge to limit texting, phone calls and other distractions while driving.

Course at Neshaminiy Mall to challenge distracted drivers

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A teenager tries to drive a course with distractions like a loud radio, texting, her brother talking to her and pedestrians yelling at her during an Allstate SafeDriving Challenge event. (Allstate)

On Sunday evening, a Central Bucks County man was killed when his teenage daughter was distracted by a dashboard light and crashed their minivan into a tree, Hilltown police reported.


In 2010, nearly 3,100 people were killed and more than 400,000 more were injured in distracted driving crashes. Almost 20 percent of all injury crashes reported in 2010 were the result of distractions, such as texting, talking on the phone and to passengers, and listening to music.


To help save lives, the Allstate car insurance company will offer its Safe Driving Challenge course at the Neshaminy Mall at 10 a.m. Wednesday. Teenagers and their parents will drive through the course, trying to avoid cones and focus on the road, while learning about the dangers of driving distracted.


Families will be encouraged to make a pledge together to limit or eliminate distractions in the car.


The event takes about four hours to complete, with drivers traveling the course three times, dealing with the distractions of texting, phone calls and rowdy passengers. Adults are urged to accompany teenagers, who otherwise will need a signed waiver to participate.

Drivers can drop in, but registration is recommended by calling Chris Conner at 484-849-1753 or e-mailing him at

Participants who cannot spend four hours at the event can get a shortened version.

The course will be set up in the southeast corner of the mall, near Boscov’s department store.  


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About this blog
Chris Palmer covers Bucks County for the Philadelphia Inquirer. His previous work has appeared in the New York Times and on several Times blogs, including City Room, the Local East Village and SchoolBook (which has since been taken over by WNYC). Contact him at, 610 313 8212 or on Twitter, @cs_palmer.

Ben Finley covers Bucks County for The Philadelphia Inquirer. He previously worked for The Associated Press, and the Bucks County Courier Times, where he won more than a dozen journalism awards from organizations including the Education Writers Association, the Society for Features Journalism and the Pennsylvania Bar Association. He grew up in Columbus, Ohio and graduated with honors from The Ohio State University with a degree in journalism. Contact him at, 610-313-8118 or on Twitter, @Ben_Finley.

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