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An Orange County law firm specializing in personal injury cases is offering scholarships as the top prizes in its video contest to shed light on the dangers of distracted driving.
The Avrek Law firm, based in Irvine, will be awarding a $5,000 scholarship as the first prize in its DriveSafe Scholarship Contest. Second place is a $2,500 scholarship. Third place is a $1,500 scholarship.
The attorneys at Avrek said they hope the contest will help prevent accidents caused by drivers who are texting, eating or doing anything else that takes their eyes off the road.
“All of us need to come together, help spread the word and educate each other on how dangerous distracted driving is to ourselves, friends, families and community,” Avrek partner Maryam Parmen said in a written statement.
The firm said the goal of its DriveSafe Scholarship Contest is to help educate and inform high school and college students about the dangers of distracted driving.
The DriveSafe Scholarship program is viral video contest. Videos will be posted on YouTube and can be any format: Journalistic, documentary, public service announcement, song, sketch or compilation. The firm will choose 10 finalists and a panel of judges will determine the top three.
Visit http://www.avrek.com/scholarships/ to register.
Avrek said non-students also can get involved and can win prizes such as Visa gift cards by participating in the referral contest by sharing the DriveSafe webinar found at the website.
Although texting gets most of the attention when people talk about distracted driving, the National Highway Safety Administration says 80 percent of all car accidents and 65 percent of all near-misses can be blamed on a driver who was distracted by eating or drinking.
Resist the urge to gawk
We’ve all been through it: The Gawkers Jam. Traffic slows to a crawl and you’re sure there has been an accident. Usually there has been, but a lot of times the cars involved have been moved to the shoulder so drivers can assess damage, exchange information and line up tow trucks.
There is nothing hampering the flow of traffic except other drivers who insist on inching past the scene so they can get a look at the cars involved.
It’s maddening, and it’s unnecessary. Yet it happens all the time, even in the Cajon Pass.
Resist the urge to gawk and everybody will get where they need to be faster.
Cajon Pass is changing
It is amazing how quickly some of the construction in the Cajon Pass is progressing. On the northbound side of Interstate 15, a new concrete center divider has been poured. And Caltrans is in the process of paving the way for new lanes in some places too.
The speed limit has been cut to 60 miles per hour in a couple of places, though when I drove the Pass last weekend not very many drivers were adhering to the lower limit.
At the bottom of the hill, where the 15 winds through Devore and into Fontana, new lanes are completed near Glen Helen Parkway. Caltrans has filled in the gaps where the freeway bridges were, except for the last one before the northbound 15 swings left in Devore.
Caltrans has done some major work on the mountainside at the bottom of the hill, too, on both sides of the 15.
Steve Hunt can be reached at 760-951-6270 or SHunt@VVDailyPress.com. Follow him on Twitter at @stevehunteditor.