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August is ‘Drive Aloha’ Month

August 7, 2018, 11:16 AM HST
* Updated August 7, 11:41 AM
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The amount of traffic fatalities in Hawai‘i in 2017 was 106—and with August being “Drive Aloha” Month, motorists will be asked again to drive cautiously as public and private school and college-age students head back to class.

“Drive Aloha” is a community effort to educate drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists to practice responsible, courteous, and safe habits and encourage positive behavior change. The safety campaign is designed to reduce the number of traffic-related accidents and make Hawai‘i’s roadways safer.

The “Drive Aloha” traffic safety campaign marks its second anniversary with an Monday, Aug. 20, sign-waving event fronting the state capitol. Various community groups between 7 and 8 a.m. that day along Beretania Street will ask drivers to drive with caution around students. Drive Aloha safety fairs are also scheduled at Pearlridge Center on Sunday, Aug. 26, and the University of Hawai‘i-Mānoa’s Campus Center on Tuesday, Aug. 28, to educate the public on safe driving tips. Both fairs will run from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The campaign, sponsored by DTRIC Insurance, Aloha Petroleum, and Lex Brodie’s Tire Shop, was initiated in August 2016 to encourage all users of our roads to practice safe and courteous behavior by reminding everyone to take responsibility for their actions on the streets. Other campaign partners include the Hawai‘i Departments of Transportation and Education and Hawai‘i Government Employees Association (HGEA).

Michele Saito, DTRIC president and CEO, said: “With our keiki heading back to school, we felt the safety message is timely to remind everyone to be courteous with the increased vehicular and pedestrian traffic on our freeways and streets. But “Drive Aloha” is not just a seasonal traffic safety campaign; it’s meant to promote safe driving year-round.”

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Recent traffic accident statistics show that:

  • There were 106 statewide fatalities in 2017 related to traffic accidents;
  • Of that figure, 60 were in motor vehicles at the time,
  • 14 were pedestrians; and
  • 31 of those fatalities were while riding bicycles or motorized scooters.
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While statewide traffic fatalities in 2017 were down from the previous year, “106 traffic deaths last year are still 106 too many,” Saito said.

The campaign aims to discourage bad commuting habits—distracted driving through use of cell phones, running a red light, jaywalking, speeding and cutting off another driver—which all lead to accidents that could have been avoided through safer behavior.

By partnering with state, city and private agencies and organizations, Drive Aloha encourages people to take the safety pledge to be courteous drivers, embrace positive behaviors and practice the aloha spirit to make the road safer and friendlier for everyone.
Drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, and all commuters are urged to take the Drive Aloha pledge online to demonstrate their commitment to practicing safer and more courteous road habits.

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