MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (WTNH) – State police announced a new distracted driver campaign on Friday. Whether it be talking, texting, or even putting on makeup, distracted drivers often cause accidents.
“We want to bring awareness. It’s beyond cell phones,” said Connecticut State Trooper First Class Pedro Muniz.
In recognition of Distracted Driving Awareness Month and Autism Awareness, state police had an honorary public information officer announce the initiative, which put more patrols on the streets in April to combat distractive driving.
Bill Prevatte is from Middletown and his dream has always been to work with law enforcement. He did a lot of research to prepare for the press conference and told reporters that nine people are killed every day in the U.S. in crashes reported to have involved a distracted driver.
“At 55 miles per hour, sending or reading a text is like driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed. Hands on the wheel, eyes on the road,” Prevatte said.
Prevatte is 26 years old and was able to live out his lifelong dream. He wanted to use this opportunity to make the roads safer.
“I want to be a leader,” Prevatte said. “I wanted to be in law enforcement since September 11.”
In addition to running his first press conference, Prevatte also got to meet the commissioner of the Department of Public Safety.
“I think if we can keep the roads safe and the highways safe and bring awareness to distracted driving, I think it will save more lives and save the lives of first responders,” Prevatte said.
“We wanted to bring awareness to distracted driving,” Muniz said. “We wanted to help Billy fulfill one of his dreams.”