Auto dealers across Canada band together to put an end to distracted driving

Thousands of customers set to #TakeTheWheel in national campaign, running March 1 – 31

VANCOUVER, March 1, 2017 /CNW/ - Customers walking through the doors of their neighbourhood auto dealership over the next month may be asked to do more than check out the latest vehicle models. They will also be encouraged to take a pledge against driving distracted – a dangerous and growing trend that is responsible for 4 million vehicle collisions a year in North America.

In its third year running, today marks the official start of the 2017 Auto Dealers Against Distracted Driving Campaign across Canada with hundreds of auto dealerships on board nationwide to participate. By lending their name to the cause, auto dealers have already committed to garnering well over 20,000 pledges from their customers, communities and staff throughout the month of March, taking collective action to say: We are not okay with distracted driving, #TakeTheWheel and help us keep our roads safe.

Customers who visit participating dealerships can make a formal commitment to drive distraction free through an online pledge at www.distractionfree.ca or by posting a personal pledge on their Twitter or Facebook pages at any time, using the #TakeTheWheel hashtag.

Linda Leo, campaign champion at West Coast Kia in Pitt Meadows, BC, is one of four featured dealers in the 2017 campaign. A demonstrated leader in previous years, Leo is once again committed to putting her ingenuity to task, using every resource available to make sure her customers are aware of how critical it is to remain focused on the road – ultimately, building the awareness required to save lives.

"West Coast Kia has been an active participant in the Distracted Driving campaign since its inception and we look forward to engaging our customers again for a cause that hits close to home in our industry," says Leo. "From my experience, it doesn't take a lot to make a connection; a quick conversation or a little reminder combined with a bit of passion has the potential to make a real impact for the cause in a short amount of time."

LGM Financial Services instigated the campaign in 2015 as a platform for Canadian dealers to step up against a growing industry issue; more importantly, to influence consumers directly through their automotive retail point-of-sale. As a collective force, dealers have the ability to bring more awareness to a form of impaired driving that puts their communities at risk – both drivers and pedestrians alike.

The campaign aims to educate drivers on the easy and simple solutions to resist the urge to drive distracted, such as pairing to blue tooth and securing potential distractions before starting a trip.

"While we continue to see hundreds of dealers participate in the campaign year over year, our focus for 2017 is to provoke increased engagement between dealers and their customers through online pledges," says Marc-Andre Lefebvre, VP of Sales for Quebec and campaign lead at LGM. "By month end, we hope to surpass our 2017 goal of more than 8,000 pledges – doubling our count from last year's campaign. I'm confident we will achieve this goal given the passionate group of dealers who have come forward to lead the charge."

This campaign is generously supported by Sovereign General Insurance Company, The Co-operators, Canadian AutoWorld, LoweMartin and Autosphere.ca.  

This March, help keep roads safe across Canada. Visit your local participating dealership or make an online pledge of support against distracted driving from home at www.distractionfree.ca or by using the #TakeTheWheel hashtag on Twitter or Facebook. Follow the national campaign on Twitter: @LGMCanada

About LGM Financial Services:
Since 1998, LGM Financial Services Inc. has been a leader in Canada's automotive industry by supplying branded warranty, insurance and finance products to distinguished automotive manufacturers across the country. Driven by innovation and service excellence, LGM is focused on maximizing dealership performance and customer satisfaction through quality products that are backed by an elite training program and a comprehensive claims and dealer support network. Read more at LGM.ca

Background material:

SOURCE LGM Financial Services Inc.

For further information: Media contact: Amanda Brkich, Manager, Marketing & Communications, LGM Financial Services, E: Amanda.Brkich@LGM.ca, P: 604.676.3881

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