Marking Distracted Driving Awareness Month – IN DE AND PA, THE CASEY FELDMAN FOUNDATION’S EndDD.ORG BUILDS SUPPORT

Friday, April 19th, 2013

 

Casey's dad, Joel Feldman, speaking at the PA news conference

DE – L to R: State Police Superintendent Col. Nathaniel McQueen Jr., Joel Feldman, Governor Jack Markell, Lieutenant Governor Matthew Denn, Tim Lengkeek, President – Delaware Trial Lawyers, Lisa Donofrio, Executive Director, Delaware Trial Lawyers

With a Governor, Lt. Governor, Attorney General and state lawmakers joining the cause, EndDD.org reached out to drivers and their passengers in Delaware and Pennsylvania, especially teenagers, with an urgent and life-saving warning to change their driving habits and stop driving distracted.

In separate news conferences in Wilmington, DE and Harrisburg, PA last week, EndDD.org founder Joel Feldman told the story of his 21-year-old daughter Casey, who was killed by a distracted driver. Feldman and his wife, Dianne Anderson, created The Casey Feldman Foundation and EndDD.org, a project of the foundation, to honor Casey’s life and save others.

“While I can’t bring Casey back, I can tell her story so that teens and adults will drive safer,” said Feldman, who worked with traffic safety, mental health and other experts to develop the EndDD.org interactive presentation that will be seen by more than 200,000 teens in 35 states this year.

In Wilmington, Feldman and EndDD.org supporters were joined by Governor Jack Markell, Lt. Governor Matt Denn, and State Police Superintendent Colonel Nathaniel McQueen, Jr. at a news conference hosted by the Delaware Trial Lawyers Association. That day, the state launched its second wave of cellphone enforcement, issuing tickets to drivers seen talking or texting on a cell phone. The Delaware Office of Highway Safety reported 1,718 crashes in 2012 due to distracted driving, one was fatal. Governor Markell made it clear that his office is committed to seeing that every teen in Delaware participate in the EndDD presentation.

DE – L: Governor Jack Markell, Joel Feldman and Lt. Governor Matt Denn sporting EndDD wristbands

“I was amazed by how many Delaware trial lawyers attended the news conference and stayed for a training session afterwards so that they could go out in their own communities and educate young drivers about the dangers of distracted driving,” said Joel Feldman.

In Harrisburg, Feldman joined State Attorney General Kathleen Kane, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, State Sen. Rob Teplitz, D-Dauphin County, Rep. Brandon Neuman, D-Washington and the Pennsylvania Association of Justice (PAJ). Sen. Teplitz and Rep. Neuman sponsored resolutions, passed unanimously in both houses, making April, “Distracted Driving Awareness Month.”

“Distracted driving takes a terrible toll on our families, communities and safety,” said Sen. Neuman. “It is my hope that educating everyone about the importance of safe driving habits will begin to change driving habits that caused 387,000 injuries and 3,331 deaths in 2011.”

“It is crucial to public safety that we continue to remind motorists to keep both eyes on the road and both hands on the wheel,” said Rep. Teplitz. “Just one moment of distraction can change the lives of not only a driver, but passengers, surrounding drivers and pedestrians, as well as their loved ones. No text message is worth risking lives.”

PA – L to R: Rep. Brandon Neuman , Mike Davey (PAJ), Joel Feldman, Scott Cooper (PAJ Pres.) and State Sen. Rob Teplitz

Rep. Teplitz praised Feldman and his family for “their leadership on this critical issue.”

“After he lost his daughter, Joel Feldman changed his own driving habits and committed himself to educating others nationwide about the dangers of distracted driving, especially teens,” Rep. Teplitz said.

“The (EndDD.org) presentation is heart-wrenching, powerful, and illuminating,” Sen. Neuman said. “It will challenge every mind and leave no heart untouched.”

Attorney General Kathleen Kane said, “It is critical that everyone, but especially teenagers who are just forming good driving habits that will last a lifetime, understands that driving while distracted is terrible dangerous…I am glad that the EndDD program is being show in high schools across Pennsylvania, and I’m proud to help make April “End Distracted Driving Month” in Pennsylvania.”

PA Attorney General Kathleen Kane speaking at the press conference

PAJ President Scott Cooper and Mike Davey, President of the News Lawyers Division of the PAJ, have committed their members to carry the EndDD program throughout the state.

Read more about the EndDD.org news conferences:

Pennsylvania:

Lawmakers, Victim’s Father Warn of Distracted Driving Dangers (Also view full video coverage of entire PA news conference here)

Father uses daughter’s story to tell dangers of distracted driving

Lawmakers, Victim’s Father Warn of Distracted Driving Dangers 

Father tries to prevent distracted driving (FOX News video)

PA Legislators recognize April as ‘Distracted Driving Awareness’ month  (News 21 video)

PA Auditor General Eugene DePasquale speaking at the news conference

 

 

 Delaware:

Father who lost daughter to distracted motorist leads effort

 

 

 

Joel Feldman receives the 2011 Pennsylvania Association for Justice 2011 Community Service Award for work in distracted driving

Friday, November 4th, 2011

Thomas Anapol (left), Joel Feldman and Pa. Association of Justice President Ken Rothweiler

On October 21, 2011 Kenneth Rothweiler, President of Pennsylvania Association for Justice, presented Joel Feldman of the law firm of Anapol, Schwartz in Philadelphia with PAJ’s 2011 Community Service Award. Mr Rothweiler spoke about how the news of Casey’s death had affected him, as well as the entire legal community. He said that Joel chose to try to turn the tragedy into something positive, and had succeeded by taking steps so that others’ children did not also die senseless deaths. He said that it was an easy choice for him to select Joel as the recipient of the Community Service Award for 2011.

Since Casey’s death at the hands of a distracted driver in 2009, Joel, and his wife Dianne, have worked to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving in order to save lives. Their collective efforts resulted in reduced pedestrian deaths in New Jersey as a result of a new pedestrian safety law and raising awareness for drivers and pedestrians about the shared responsibility for safety. (more…)