Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples de Puerto Rico joined the Traffic Safety Commission’s campaign to prevent drivers from using their cell phones while behind the wheel, launching Wednesday its “Text U Later” mobile application to create awareness against unnecessary distractions on the road.
Upon receiving a text message, the ‘app’ designed for Android phones generates the “Driving and texting don’t go together” response to let the caller know that the driver is busy. In addition, the app provides a detailed list of contacts and phone numbers to which the automatic message was sent.
“We’ve joined this educational campaign because we recognize the importance of creating awareness about the responsible use of mobile phones,” said Seguros Múltiples President Roberto Castro-Hiraldo. “Prevention is the key to avoid car accidents because drivers doesn’t have their five senses on the wheel. It is a fact that cell phones distract and limit the use of both hands to drive.”
According to a Traffic Safety Commission study, nearly 56 percent of all mobile phone users in Puerto Rico admitted using the devices while driving.
This public/private sector effort precedes the implementation of Law 22 of 2011, which amended the Puerto Rico Transit and Vehicles Law to limit the use of cell phones while driving starting Jan. 1, 2013. This law allows the use of mobile phones while driving only with hands-free devices, like headsets, except for emergency calls. Violators will be fined $50.
“Applications like ‘Text U Later’ are very important for the success of our educational campaign. We don’t want to wait until January 1, 2013. We want everyone to acknowledge the risks of using a cell phone while driving and modify their habits, not only to avoid fines and other penalties detailed on Law 22, but to prevent car accidents”, said Zoriemy Rivera, the Traffic Safety Commission’s executive director.
The “Text U Later” app is free can be downloaded at www.textulaterpr.com.