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Watch Out!

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Children and teenagers are often distracted by their smartphones. In traffic this can have fatal consequences, as evidenced by a three times higher accident rate among young people in the last years, caused by distracted walking. Since young people often do not listen to the warnings of parents or teachers, the national mobile initiative “Watch Out!” offers itself as an ideal tool against the dangers of distraction coming from gaming, writing or reading on a mobile device while participating in traffic. The initiative uses beacon transmitters to stop kids in traffic from being distracted by their smartphones. Once the app is installed, distracted kids are warned at dangerous locations like traffic lights, as their devices pick up a signal from a nearby beacon transmitter. The signal triggers a warning screen on the phone and immediately blocks all other smartphone activities. As a result, the kid’s attention is fully brought back to the traffic and its threatening danger. A digital campaign generated widespread awareness among parents, who downloaded the app onto their children’s smartphones. As of today, many thousands of push notifications have already been sent to warn kids of dangerous traffic situations.

Statement by the Jury

This campaign draws attention to the issue of kids and young adults being distracted in traffic due to using electronic devices and presents an innovative solution to this pressing safety risk to society: interrupting and stopping all activities on the smartphone in case of potential danger is exactly what reaches this particular target group. The clear signal “Watch Out!” is impossible to ignore and thus effectively contributes to accident prevention.

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