Allstate "Reality Rides" Tour Merges Virtual Technology and Driving to Combat Distractions on the Road


don't text and drive (select to view enlarged photo)

New 2013 national campaign will visit more than 20 cities across America

NORTHBROOK, IL--April 15, 2013: Allstate Insurance Company will build upon its efforts to bring awareness around distraction-free driving with a new national campaign tour, called "Reality RidesSM." Allstate Reality Rides will travel to more than 20 American cities to bring a driving simulator that demonstrates the dangers of distracted driving. From community events to high school assemblies and safe driving advocacy programs, Reality Rides will tour a variety of venues in an effort to reach a wide range of drivers.

"The Allstate Reality Rides tour is an innovative, engaging approach to raising awareness about the importance of distraction-free driving," said Sanjay Gupta, executive vice president of marketing, innovation and corporate relations at Allstate Insurance Company. "We'll be going to communities across the country to gain awareness about the dangers of cell phone use and texting behind the wheel.  Advocating for driver safety is an important part of Allstate's legacy and this outreach effort will build on our commitment to keep our kids and all drivers safer on the roads."

Reality Rides consists of a driving simulator that utilizes a real - but stationary - vehicle equipped with virtual reality technology, including a headset that displays an animated environment and reacts to the driver's motions. Using the car's steering wheel, gas and brake pedals, the driver is tasked with driving while also attempting to text and talk on the phone.

These simulations demonstrate the potential consequences distracted drivers could face while on the road. To add impact to the simulations, participants are given traffic "tickets" that reveal potential infractions a driver could receive if the experience happened in real life. Participants will also have the opportunity to take the Allstate X the TXT pledge that promises to not text and drive.

Allstate continues to advocate for distracted driving prevention because in 2010 and 2011 more than 3,000 deaths from crashes with a distracted driver occurred each year. Studies have shown drivers who text are 23 times more likely to crash, and texting while driving is the equivalent to driving impaired after drinking four beers.

Car crashes are the number one cause of death for everyone in the U.S. ages 1-34, with teens crashing four times more often than any other age group. Stronger teen driving laws, referred to as Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL), have been shown to reduce traffic fatalities by as much as 40 percent in the states where they have been adopted. Additionally, recent research from The Allstate Foundation's License to Save report found that comprehensive GDL laws could save an estimated 2,000 lives and $13.6 billion annually.

To track the Allstate Reality Rides tour and see photos of participants, visit Facebook. While there, check out information and resources, engage in the conversation and invite family and friends to take action in support of stronger teen driving laws.

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