‘Safe 2 Save’: City of Austin launches competition, offering thousands to reduce distracted driving

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AUSTIN (KXAN) — Would you drive without touching your cell phone for cash?

The City of Austin is hosting a competition where you can win thousands of dollars to reduce distracted driving.

Partnering with State Farm Insurance and Farm & City, the competition gives people the chance to win up to $10,000 in prizes, simply by staying off your phone while driving.

It’s been five years since Eric Bauereis lost his son, who was hit and killed by a distracted driver.

“It was particularly upsetting for us, [happening] two blocks from home,” Bauereis said.

Bauereis knows distracted driving is still a huge problem. He’s supportive of the new campaign setting out to put an end to it.

“I think it’s the best thing they can do,” Bauereis said.

The National Safety Council found every seven seconds someone is hurt in a crash. Every 15 seconds, someone dies. And stats show you’re 23 times more likely to crash when texting and driving.

“We’ve already exceeded 430 serious injuries and fatalities this year in Austin,” Lewis Leff with the City of Austin Transportation Department said. “These are mothers and fathers. These are young kids, grandparents, friends, neighbors and colleagues suffering.”

In the ‘Safe 2 Save’ month-long competition, the less you touch your phone the more points you get. The driver with a score of 98 or above will be entered to win between $1,000 and $3,000.

  • First prize is $3,000
  • Second prize is $2,000
  • Third prize is $1,000

Drivers who participate can also redeem their points for discounts at partnering businesses.

Though this is a fun way to draw awareness to a serious issue, Bauereis really hopes people change their driving habits.

“It’s hard to get people to hear just how badly it affects families, when accidents like this happen,” Bauereis said.

Here are directions from The ‘Safe 2 Save’ Marketing Director Christina Wilson:

“To enter the competition, participants can download the free app (available on iOS and Android) called SAFE 2 SAVE. Enter the competition code: AUSTIN2021. Turn the app on before beginning driving and start earning rewards immediately for free and discounted items at popular restaurants and local merchants such la Madeleine, Daily Juice, McDonald’s, Asada’s Grill, Craig O’s, Smoothie King and many more! 

SAFE 2 SAVE, the creator of the competition, is a mobile app that rewards users for driving undistracted. When driving over 10 mph and using the SAFE 2 SAVE app, participants will receive a driving score based on the number of times they touch their phone. The less a participant touches their phone, the higher their driving score. Personal data will not be shared with others.”

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