Teen Releases

Teens give distracted driving Canadians a piece of their minds

Allstate Canada announces winners of national high school contest

TORONTO, ON— January 22, 2014—According to a recent poll conducted by Allstate Insurance Company of Canada and Abacus Data, 90 per cent of Canadian drivers admit to driving with some kind of distraction, and yet nearly all of those surveyed (97 per cent) perceive distracted driving negatively if done by others. For several years, Allstate Canada has worked to raise awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. The Just Drive Canada contest was created to give young Canadians the chance to speak out about this important issue and turn awareness of the risks of distracted driving into real behavioural change behind the wheel. Car collisions are the number one cause of death among Canadian teens. A growing body of research identifies driver inattention as a contributing factor in, what one study reports, up to 80 per cent of collisions.

The second annual Just Drive Canada contest was announced last fall and invited high school students across Canada to upload video, audio or an image offering their advice to distracted drivers. The contest generated 240 entries from 64 schools across the country, a nearly 70 per cent increase over the previous year. Nearly 58,000 public votes were cast during the six-week public voting period from November 14 to December 11, 2013.

“It was encouraging to see how committed the students were to entrenching this important safety message,” said John O’Donnell, President and CEO for Allstate Insurance Company of Canada. “In the longer term, we share the students’ hopes that distracted driving becomes as unacceptable as drinking and driving.” 

Just Drive Canada contest winners

First place
“Distracted Driving is a Killer”
Rostyslav Soroka, Austin Affleck, Bryce Grimes, and Matthew Fok from Lillian Osborne High School
Edmonton, Alberta
$1500 prize plus $1000 to the school

“Keep Your Eyes on the Road”
Amy MacDonald, Eric Freeman, Cosburn Warner, and Abdullah Channaa from Hill Park Secondary School
Hamilton, Ontario
$1000 prize plus $500 to the school

First place
Julianne Breen and Kristina Van Damme from Lambton Central Collegiate & VI
Petrolia, Ontario
$1000 prize plus $500 to the school

“Texto limité”
Luka and Matis Lemay from Ecole D’Education Internationale
McMasterville, Quebec
$500 prize plus $250 to the school

First place
“Distracted Driving: You Have A Lot to Lose”
Collin Mills, Connor Duggan, Holly Crump and Tristan Sargent-Waye from Hill Park Secondary School
Hamilton, Ontario
$500 prize plus $250 to the school

“Who Wouldn’t Want Super Powers?”
Jordan Obaldo from St. Augustine Secondary School
Brampton, Ontario
$250 prize plus $125 to the school

“This year’s entries for the Just Drive contest were so inspiring – I was blown away by how enthusiastic and creative the students were,” said MTV’s Phoebe Dykstra, who once again served as a judge on the contest. “Congrats to everyone who entered and helped spread this important message reminding people about the importance of driving safely.”

In order to help students share their message and further spread the word on the dangers of distracted driving, schools were also encouraged to get involved. Judges evaluated the combination of number of entries and votes that came in from each school, as well as quality of submissions to determine the most engaged school as the Just Drive Canada School Spirit Prize recipient.

For the second year running, the recipient of the school spirit prize is:

School Spirit Prize
John Paul II Secondary School in London, Ontario
$2500 to the most engaged school

About the judging

Judging occurred in two stages including online public voting from November 14, 2013 to December 11, 2013, followed by review from a panel of judges from December 12, 2013 to January 3, 2014. Official Judges included: MTV Personality Phoebe Dykstra; Deputy Chief Lee Foreman, Camrose City Police Service; Constable Daniel Castonguay, Montreal Police Service; Bob Annan and John Hinds, founding partners of Accident Awareness; Anne Marie Hayes, certified driving instructor and President of Teens Learn to Drive Foundation; and Karyn Toon, Director of Corporate Relations, Allstate Insurance Company of Canada.

“I was impressed with the quality of the submissions for this contest,” noted Deputy Chief Lee Foreman of the Camrose City Police Service and a contest judge. “Distracted driving has become much too common; the consequences can be terribly tragic, so please pay attention to the message our youth are delivering.”

Additional information about the contest, including rules and regulations can be found at justdrivecanada.ca, and further information about the Just Drive Campaign can be found at Facebook.com/JustDriveCanada, Twitter.com/JustDriveCanada and on the blog at blog.justdrivecanada.ca. More information about the contest judges can be found here. All contest entries, including the winning entries can be seen at
www.justdrivecanada.ca. Any image can be downloaded by right clicking and saving to a desktop.

About Allstate Insurance Company of Canada

Allstate Insurance Company of Canada is one of Canada’s leading producers and distributors of home and auto insurance products, and also recently named for second year in a row to Aon Hewitt’s Best Employers in Canada list. “The Good Hands Network®” enables consumers to contact Allstate Canada through one of 83 community-based Agencies, directly online at allstate.ca and through the Customer Contact Centre at 1-800-Allstate. Allstate Canada is committed to making a positive difference in the communities in which it operates and has partnered with organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD Canada), Crime Stoppers, United Way and Junior Achievement. To learn more about Allstate Canada, visit allstate.ca and justdrivecanada.ca.

About the Allstate Canada Distracted Driver Poll

Allstate Canada commissioned Abacus Data (abacusdata.ca) to conduct an online survey of 2465 Canadian adults, including 2175 that have their drivers licenses. The total sample was weighted by age, gender and region to be proportionately representative of the Canadian population aged 18 and older. Responses were collected May 21 to 25, 2013.


For further information or to schedule an interview, please contact: 

Media Contact

Katie Charbonneau
Thornley Fallis Communications
416-515-7517 ext 328

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