CHARLOTTE — The City of Rock Hill was named a 2013 South Carolina Outstanding Traffic Safe Community by the AAA Carolinas Foundation for Traffic Safety.
Capt. Rod Stinson and Major Steve Parker of the Rock Hill Police Dept. accepted the award during a ceremony on Nov. 19 at Seawells in Columbia. In all, 15 South Carolina communities were honored, including three Grand Winners - Iva, Newberry, and Mount Pleasant - during the 10th annual Traffic Safe Community awards luncheon hosted by the AAA Carolinas Foundation for Traffic Safety. Rock Hill was one of five winners in the more than 30,000 population category.
The AAA Carolinas Foundation for Traffic Safety continues to tackle the deadly practice of texting while driving, especially among teen drivers, a group who has grown up continuously connected to cell phones and computers, said Angela Vogel Daley, president of AAA Carolinas Traffic Safety Foundation. AAA Carolinas goal is to create a culture change among teens concerning texting while driving.
The AAA Carolinas Foundation for Traffic Safety provides awards in an effort to recognize those cities that make a strong effort to make South Carolina's roads safer.
One of the highlights of the ceremony was repeat Grand Winner Newberry, which has won the 10,000-30,000 population category seven out of 10 years. Additionally, only two communities have been in the top five for their population category every year Newberry and Goose Creek.
More about the Grand Winners: Mount Pleasant has been recognized as a Traffic Safe Community for nine out of 10 years; it was the Grand Winner in 2004, 2005, 2009, 2010 and 2011. The town recently enacted a no texting while driving ordinance, and town officials visit the local schools to educate teens about the dangers of texting while driving. Mount Pleasant also operates under the TIPs program to prevent bars from over-serving alcohol. NewberryNewberry has received a Traffic Safe Community award every year and has won Grand Winner in 2005 2008, 2010 and again in 2012. The town visits local apartment complexes, church groups and school groups to learn where the problem areas are in the town and uses that information to focus their efforts. Newberry also organized Prom Promise at local high schools with a live mock DUI collision scene. IvaThis is Ivas first year as a Traffic Safe Community Grand Winner. The town appeared in the top five for its population for the first time last year. For Iva, safety fairs are a top priority. They are heavily involved with their local schools and they set up booths at town events to promote traffic safety. They also regularly perform safety and speed checks. The foundation recognized 12 other communities with Outstanding Traffic Safe Community awards for leadership in traffic safety including: Population greater than 30,000: Goose Creek, Sumter, Summerville, Rock Hill
Population between 10,000 and 30,000: Port Royal, Hanahan, Mauldin, Simpsonville Population less than 10,000: Lynchburg, Isle of Palms, Elloree, Lake View. AAA Traffic Safe Communities are selected by looking at crash statistics, the number of law enforcement officers per capita, and the presence of a formal traffic safety program and/or existence of a special traffic division. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte provided the statistical analysis and the AAA Carolinas Foundation for Traffic Safety chose winners in each category giving extra emphasis to those communities that are proactive in enhancing traffic safety efforts.
The AAA Carolinas Foundation for Traffic Safety is a non-profit organization founded by AAA Carolinas and funded by AAA Carolinas member contributions that works to promote traffic safety initiatives in North and South Carolina.