11:15 a.m. Thurs, Feb. 7, Room 317, State Capitol
Actor Erik Estrada to join Assemblymember Jim Frazier at Capitol press conference about legislation to crack down on the illegal use of phones while driving
Press conference will be livestreamed on Facebook @ASMJimFrazier
SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D-Discovery Bay), chair of the Assembly Transportation Committee, will hold a press conference on Thursday, Feb. 7, in Room 317 at the State Capitol to publicize a bill to crack down on the increasing illegal use of phones while driving.
Actor Erik Estrada, who starred as “Ponch” in the hit TV series “CHiPs” (1977-83), and has remained close to law enforcement throughout his career, will join Frazier to talk about the dangers of using a phone while driving. Frazier and Estrada made a video public service announcement that warns about the deadly consequences of driving while distracted. The PSA, made for Impact Teen Drivers, will be premiered at the press conference.
Impact Teen Drivers is a nonprofit dedicated to sharing with teens the dangers of reckless and distracted driving through campaigns online and in schools. A member of ITD’s board will also speak the press conference.
Distracted driving – specifically using a phone while driving – has become one of the major causes of fatal automobile accidents in the state and the nation. Teen drivers are particularly vulnerable.
The bill, AB 47, which Frazier is jointly authoring with Assemblymember Tom Daly (D-Anaheim), would add a point to the driving record of those convicted of illegally using a phone while driving.
In August, California Highway Patrol Officer Kirk Griess was killed by a motorist who lost control of his pick up while on his phone on Interstate 80 in Fairfield. Eleven days later, three Caltrans workers were injured, one seriously, on the same stretch of I-80 by a driver who may have been distracted when he crashed into a van the Caltrans workers were using. Both crashes occurred in the 11th Assembly District, which Frazier represents.
A recently published observational study found that motorists illegally using their phones increased in 2018, after years of decline.
Assemblymember Frazier represents the 11th Assembly District, which includes the communities of Antioch, Bethel Island, Birds Landing, Brentwood, Byron, Collinsville, Discovery Bay, Fairfield, Isleton, Knightsen, Locke, Oakley, Pittsburg (partial), Rio Vista, Suisun City, Travis AFB, Vacaville and Walnut Grove.
CONTACT: Andrew Bird (916) 319-2011 Andrew.Bird@asm.ca.gov