New findings suggest that partnership between TVB, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Ad Council has contributed to a reduction in drunk driving fatalities during the Holiday Season.
Today, the Television Bureau of Advertising, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Ad Council released results indicating that their annual anti-drunk-driving effort, “Project Roadblock: Local TV Puts the Brakes on Drunk Driving,” has contributed to safer roads during the holiday season.
According to NHTSA, the period between Christmas and New Year’s typically sees one of the highest incidence rates of impaired driving fatalities. Over the last decade, TVB, the Ad Council and NHTSA have been working in partnership with local broadcast television stations across the U.S. to create an annual, nationwide campaign, Project Roadblock, between Dec. 26 and 31.
Local stations voluntarily participate in the campaign by airing Buzzed Driving Prevention PSAs during the concentrated six-day period, with a special push at 10 p.m. local time on New Year’s Eve. This partnership helps to raise awareness of the dangers to impaired driving, and has played a role in ensuring people stay safe during one of the deadliest auto fatality weeks of the year.
The latest analysis of NHTSA annual data demonstrates a decline in impaired driving fatalities from 2004 to 2013. On average:
- Alcohol-impaired driving fatalities per day during the Christmas holiday period declined 40%.
- Alcohol-impaired driving fatalities per day during the New Year’s holiday period declined 28%.
“While we have made progress, drunk driving remains a serious threat on our roads and claims more than 10,000 lives a year,” said NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind. “Local broadcast television is an effective tool in reaching consumers, and we thank the TVB, all the stations, and the Ad Council for their ongoing support of drunk driving prevention, especially during the holiday season.”
Launched in December 2004, Project Roadblock was created by the local broadcast television industry as a way to support NHTSA and the Ad Council’s Buzzed Driving Prevention PSA campaign. The Project Roadblock campaign has offered local television stations the opportunity to educate consumers on the dangers of impaired driving by donating on-air, online and mobile advertising time and space for the PSAs.
To date, TV stations across the nation have donated more than $41.3 million, including a record $6.5 million in donated media during the 2014 holiday season.
Steve Lanzano, president-CEO of TVB, added: “Local broadcast TV stations are committed to promoting safety in their communities and for 11 years, Project Roadblock has been a significant part of these efforts. With reach into over 99% of U.S. TV households, the resources donated by broadcasters are having an impact on helping to make the holiday season safer and happier for everyone.”
“Fatalities related to drunk driving are 100 percent preventable. The spike in driving while buzzed around the holiday season is especially alarming, and the Ad Council is proud to team up with our partners to prevent these tragedies,” said Lisa Sherman, Ad Council president-CEO. “These PSAs are great reminders during the holiday season, and our partnership with TVB has made a huge difference in raising awareness and encouraging safer choices.”