TORONTO, June 2, 2014 /CNW/ - Do you text when you drive? Here's a simple message: "D.O.N.T."! June is Brain Injury Awareness month. Through a campaign launched today, the Ontario Brain Injury Association, along with affiliated community brain injury associations across Ontario, are encouraging Ontarians to become more aware of the potential for brain injuries due to motor vehicle crashes caused by distracted driving - including driving while texting or talking on a cell phone.
The province-wide campaign will use radio public service announcements, posters, t-shirts, social media and other events to share the D.O.N.T. message. For information and resources about the D.O.N.T. campaign or to take the D.O.N.T. pledge, please visit www.idont.ca.
According to the Ontario Alliance for Action on Brain Injury, approximately 18,000 brain injuries occur in Ontario each year. In fact, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, brain injury is the leading cause of death and disability for people under the age of 44 and kills more people under the age 20 than all other causes combined.
"Brain injuries can range from mild to severe, but all brain injuries can have lasting effects," said Ruth Wilcock, Executive Director of OBIA. "Sadly, a brain injury is a lifelong condition with varying degrees of disability ranging from minor to those requiring complete 24/7 care. Those experiencing a traumatic brain injury require immediate care at a trauma centre, acute care in the hospital as necessary and intensive rehabilitation in a brain injury facility and often long term follow up by professionals in the field."
- Brain injury is the leading killer and disabler of people under the age of 44 and kills more people under the age 20 than any other causes combined. (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- Acquired brain injury is 15 times more common than spinal cord injury, 30 times more common than breast cancer and 400 times more common than HIV/AIDS. (US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
- 40 percent of Acquired Brain Injury survivors sustained their brain injury as a result of an automobile collision (2012 OBIA Impact Report)
- Distracted driving is cited as a causal factor in 30 to 50 per cent of traffic collisions in Ontario, but is probably much higher due to under-reporting. (Ontario Provincial Police)
- Texting while driving is the same as driving blind for 5 seconds at a time (VA. Tech Transportation Institute). In three seconds, at sixty kilometres per hour you travel fifty metres—that's the distance across half a football field. (Ontario Ministry of Transportation)
The 2014 D.O.N.T. campaign has been generously sponsored by Mazin and Associates PC and the Ontario Brain Injury Association.
SOURCE: Ontario Brain Injury Association
For further information: Media inquiries: Ruth Wilcock, Executive Director, Ontario Brain Injury Association, [email protected], 905-641-8877 x238