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Virginia Attorney General Addresses Drunk Driving and Underage Drinking in New Radio Campaign
Date:10/26/2007

Spots encourage use of designated drivers and open dialogue between parents

and teens

RICHMOND, Va., Oct. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell today launched a campaign aimed at preventing drunk driving and underage drinking with new 30-second radio public service announcements (PSAs) set to air on stations throughout the state. The spots are timed to coincide with the busy fall season and will air more than 4,000 times between now and mid-December.

"Promoting the use of designated drivers is an important message leading up to Thanksgiving and the kick off of the holiday season," McDonnell says. "This campaign reminds adults that we all play a part in preventing drunk driving and that one of the easiest and most effective ways to do that is to designate a driver. By doing so, Virginians are joining the millions of adults nationwide who have been or have used a designated driver."

McDonnell also takes aim at underage drinking with two radio spots that remind parents about the importance of talking with their teenage and college-age children about underage and abusive drinking. According to a report from the National Academy of Sciences, two-thirds of teens who drink say they get alcohol from their parents or other adults. Further, the GfK Roper Youth Report(TM), a survey of teens conducted for more than a decade, reveals the majority of teens (69 percent), ages 13 to 17, have consistently cited their parents as the No. 1 influence on their decisions to drink or not.

"Parents have a tremendous influence on their teens' decisions about whether or not to drink," explains McDonnell. "By communicating openly and honestly, setting a good example, and not providing alcohol for their teens or their teens' friends, parents play a critical role in ensuring their children make smart, safe choices."

Fortunately, recent government studies show that underage drinking continues to decline. According to the federal government's 2006 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 83 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds do not drink. In Virginia, the number is even higher at 86 percent. Likewise, teen drunk-driving fatalities are down 56 percent statewide since 1982, according to the DOT.

The three radio spots, which are available for download at http://www.vaag.com/PRESS_RELEASES/index.html, will rotate in paid airings on radio stations across Virginia through the early part of December.

Production and placement of the public service announcements was provided by Anheuser-Busch Cos. as part of its continuing efforts to help prevent drunk driving and underage drinking. No public funds were used to create or run these messages.

GfK Roper Youth Report is a trademark of GfK Custom Research North America.


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SOURCE Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell
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