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Verizon and Florida Highway Patrol launch Danger Thumbs campaign

Danger Thumbs postcard_4x6_front Verizon Wireless and the Florida Highway Patrol launched a "Danger Thumbs" campaign, traveling to high schools to talk about the dangers of texting while driving. 

The first stop for this is my old high school, Charles W. Flanagan High in Pembroke Pines, on Saturday Sept. 4. Driver's Ed students will get the statistics about the dangers, and there will be a pledge card they sign to keep in their wallet. They're also giving away keychains as reminder tokens.

It's not going to be a scared-straight type of presentation. "You don't need to have a wreck to know this is not safe," Verizon spokesman Chuck Hamby said. "This is about starting the discussion."

The FHP has already been going to school driver's ed classes. Sergeant Mark Wysocky of FHP teams up with the Florida Trucking Association to teach students about trucker blind spots. But when he visits Flanagan, he'll also talk about the dangers of texting while driving.

"We realize adults do it, basically whoever has a phone seems to do it," Wysocky said. "We just have to keep getting the point across."

There will also be stops in Tallahassee, Tampa and Orlando. Hamby said they'll be getting feedback from Flanagan to improve the program as it expands to other schools.

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