Enough with the reckless driving.
Many Port Washington residents want to put an end to the texting while driving, speeding, illegal U-turns, disregard for stop signs and pedestrians in crosswalks, and more.
And while that challenge may sound like a tall order, a new Port Washington Police initiative aims to prompt drivers to think twice before violating vehicle and traffic laws. The idea is to inspire community involvement from the schools, scouting troops and others, and back it with with strict and steady police enforcement.
“This is a great town,” said Port Washington Police Commissioner Dave Franklin, “But with the traffic situation, we need to make the town safer.”
“Most of those served by our law enforcement community obey the law,” said the police's Acting Chief James Salerno, in a statement. “Others may simply need an educational reminder from a public service announcement. Working together as partners, as a community, we can increase our traffic safety awareness and prevent accidents and injuries.”
The initiative includes a contest to come up with the best driver safety slogan, the winner of which to be featured on bumper stickers. (Send your ideas to email@example.com)
Students involved with Schreiber High School's television station will be charged with the task to produce public service announcements to run in the schools. The goal, Franklin said, is to educate the community members to warn against not only texting and driving, but also walking and texting. Franklin, who works professionally in television, said some of his award-winning producer friends will be giving students guidelines on how to edit their PSAs.
“We’re trying everything we can,” Franklin said, adding that he expected that the older students would influence the younger kids, and help produce a generation of safe drivers.
School Superintendent Dr. Kathleen Mooney gave the intiative high marks.
“Our students and staff will be working closely with the police department to write and film important public safety messages on a variety of relevant topics such as texting and/or talking on the phone while driving, proper behavior while crossing busy intersections, etc.,” she said.
“The goal is to broadcast these messages throughout the day in common areas at Schreiber as well as for the Police Department to use them to educate the public,” she added
The PSAs will also be posted on the school district’s web site, she noted.
“This is an exciting joint community service project that we hope ultimately will save lives,” she said.