As one of the most traveled seasons of the year approaches, the Association of Oklahoma General Contractors encourages drivers to refrain from texting while behind the wheel of a vehicle in an effort to decrease distracted driving accidents.

Texting and driving has become an epidemic and one of the country’s number one killers. According to the National Safety Council, texting and driving causes 1.6 million accidents. All travelers should remain focused while behind the wheel to ensure safety among themselves, other commuters and construction workers.

“This destructive trend poses a major concern for the people of Oklahoma, particularly the construction workers that risk their lives to help to keep our roads and bridges safe,” said Bobby Stem, executive director of AOGC. “The most effective way to prevent distracted driving accidents is to eliminate texting while on the road.”

Two construction workers were killed in construction zones and nearly 800 people were injured statewide in 2011. In 2012, AOGC launched a no texting campaign, When You See A Cone, Put Down The Phone, to encourage travelers and commuters to stay off of their cell phones, especially while in construction zones. This campaign began as a way to create a safe work environment for the many contractors working across the state of Oklahoma.

“As traveling rates increase during this time of year and construction to strengthen Oklahoma’s roads and bridges takes place in all 77 counties, When You See A Cone, Put Down The Phone becomes a vitally important slogan to abide by,” said Stem. “Keeping both Oklahoma residents and visitors safe is a top priority for AOGC so please remember to stay off of your phone while on the road.”