Protect Your Privilege

The Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office launched the “Protect Your Privilege” campaign at Central Catholic High School on April 29, 2024, in an effort to end distracted driving. Protect Your Privilege is designed to educate and caution drivers on the dangers and consequences of distracted driving. Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala, Jr. briefed students at Central Catholic to raise awareness for distracted driving. The presentation included statistics and real-life examples to emphasize the impact distracted driving poses on the lives of everyone on the road.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, in 2022, distracted driving accounted for 8% of all fatal crashes in the United States, and killed approximately 3,300 people. Cell phone usage while driving caused 12% of fatal distracted car accidents. Drivers aged 15-24 made up nearly a quarter of those involved in fatal cell phone-related crashes.

Driving at a rate of 25 mph, a car travels 36 feet in one second. DA Zappala demonstrated the distance with the rows of the auditorium, noting that rows A-J would have been hit by a moving vehicle. 

Our goal is to provide students with the proper knowledge and tips to prevent distracted driving accidents. Driving is a privilege. It is a privilege to share the road, and when that privilege is abused, it doesn’t just affect one life. It affects the lives of many families, friends and entire communities.

This is about leadership,” said DA Zappala. “This is about stepping up and being counted. It’s not about protecting yourself, it’s about protecting your brothers and sisters, extended families and the people that you love, because in an instant, life is a very fragile thing and it’s gone.”

Distracted driving accidents occur year-round. It is appropriate to reinforce this material as prom season approaches. However, drivers should be aware of the dangerous possibilities every time they get behind the wheel, in order to Protect Their Privilege.

 “Speak up, please,” said DA Zappala.  “If you see your friends or family using phones, being distracted while driving, please say something. Start a conversation but speak up when you see it. No message is worth your life or the life of anybody else.”

Protect Your Privilege Materials can be downloaded for use below: 

Protect Your Privilege Flyer 1

Protect Your Privilege Flyer 2

Protect Your Privilege Flyer 3