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In this regard, a press conference was held at the Hilton Beirut Habtoor Grand hotel under the auspices of the Minister of Telecommunications, Mr. Nicolas Sehanoui, and the presence of his representative, Mr. Ziad Abs.
Present at this conference were a crowd of media officials along with touch managers and employees headed by the General Manager, Mr. Claude Bassil as well as representatives from the Internal Security Forces, Civil Defense, Fire Brigade of Beirut, and the Lebanese Red Cross.
"This campaign complements "Drive Zain" safety campaign, launched by our mother company Zain, considered as one of the largest social responsibility campaigns held across the Middle East promoting road safety, said Ms. Ghada Barakat, Corporate Communications & Relations Manager for touch. Barakat added that "touch aims through "Avoid Distracted Driving" campaign to shed the light on the dangers of distracted driving that has become one of the 3 main reasons behind car accidents, and specifically on texting while driving."
Barakat continued: "With the collaboration of Yasa we seek to spread awareness about the dangers involved with distracted driving through various media channels. Texting requires visual, manual and cognitive efforts from the driver thus increasing the risk of having a car accident 23 times more than a driver who doesn't get distracted by texting while driving. Given that texting and driving could be the most dangerous of all reasons behind car accidents, we deemed necessary to launch this campaign and be socially responsible and active."
On the other hand, Mr. Ziad Akl, YASA's president commented, "This collaboration is not the first of its kind with touch. Since 2006, many initiatives have been launched all in the pursuit of encouraging drivers to adopt the best possible habits to avoid dangerous and fatal accidents. More importantly however, this event opened up the opportunity for both touch and YASA to honor each of the Internal Security Forces, Civil Defense, Fire Brigade of Beirut, and the Lebanese Red Cross for their efforts in providing and maintaining peace and security in Lebanon. Touch took the initiative of moving this campaign to the next level by offering 400 customized helmets, such as ones specific to motorcycles whose quality standards have been approved by both the European Union and the American Ministry of transportation."
Akl continued by referring to Yasa's participation in the "Avoid Distracted Driving" safety campaign" explaining that "it is the first of its kind in the Lebanese society in the pursuit of spreading awareness about the dangers of texting while driving. This campaign will be one of many sustainable and long term initiatives in which Yasa participates in light of the new traffic law presented to the parliament and established on the 3rd of July.
The press conference ended by offering Internal Security Forces, Civil Defense, Fire Brigade of Beirut, and the Lebanese Red Cross with honorary trophies thanking them for their efforts in maintaining peace and safety across the Lebanese society.