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Thumb bands send message of driving safety to high school students

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The Auburn Police Department and local companies have teamed up to get a message out to teen drivers: texting kills. The message is being relayed through “thumb bands,” which are similar to the rubber bracelets that support various causes. Stuart Snyder, of Gold Rush Chevrolet, funded the bands, which were designed by MAJR Specialties, of Grass Valley. “Txting Kills” is inscribed along the outside of the band. “The thought behind the thumb bands is to remind folks of the dangers created by texting while driving and distracted driving,” said Officer Chris Forman. The police department began passing the bands out to Placer High School students Thursday. Forman said he hopes all high school students in Placer County can eventually receive the bands. Forman said there are several statistics that support the message on the bands. “The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates drivers using a hand-held cellular device are four times more likely to be involved in a serious collision compared to a non-distracted driver,” Forman said. “Another interesting statistic is 18 percent of all traffic collision fatalities are contributed to cellular phone use. Studies show the distraction caused from driving while using a cellular device is similar to the distraction caused by being impaired at a level above the legal limit of .08 percent blood alcohol content. Forman said any business owner wishing to be part of the effort to reduce distracted driving can contact him by e-mailing cforman@auburn.ca.gov. ~Staff report