Mary Alice Reporting – Two new billboards will be on display in the county related to awareness about distracted driving.

Going into its 3rd year, the competition is continuing to grow and Buckeye Career Center students Ben Williamson and Cameron Brandt collaborated on a project and the other winner was Emily Jones, from Indian Valley.

Brandt explains that they looked at past designs and even asked their peers. They came out on top to each win $125 for their design that Williamson says is simple with a broken phone.

“It’s supposed to be an after scene of a crash. The phone falls out and the mother text the child, I love you. See you in five minute, but the child is not there to answer.”

Brandt notes that he has experienced the potential threat distracted driving can cause when, a few weeks, he slowed down behind a car during slick road conditions.

“And the woman in front of me started to slow down and she pumped her breaks really hard. I think she had her phone [out] because she was swerving back and forth.”

Program Coordinator Kelly Snyder explains that Jones created a billboard that brought awareness to the fender benders that can happen over being distracted.

“[It] says, you’ll be next if you drive and text, and then it has a picture of a crash. The crash reminds you of one where you might be sitting at a light, and you think it turns green, then you go because you’re looking at your phone. A fender bender type thing which can turn into a serious accident.”

The annual contest is through Tuscarawas Safe Communities with a partnership with Lisa Hoy at State Farm Insurance and the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

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