LINCOLN – The Nebraska Department of Transportation (NDOT) once again is seeking witty, fun, and creative safety messages from the public.
The department has been posting safe driving messages on electronic message boards along state interstates and major highways for a few years. Last year the department began to request creative and witty safety messages from the public to post on Fridays.
Jeni Campana with the Communication Office at NDOT says they really want to encourage safe driving, such as wearing seat belts, not being distracted, going the speed limit, etc. But she states the department also wanted to engage the public.
“We really wanted to get the public involved. So last summer we had opened it for the first time,” explained Campana. “And at that time we had got about 340 submissions over a six week period. So we were happy with that and that we got a lot of public participation. People were really interested in it. And we got a lot of really good ideas that we could use for the rest of the year. So it made sense to be able to open it up again in January and see what kind of feedback we would get and what kind of responses we would get to really encourage safe driving across the state.”
Campana adds while the response and amount of submissions was overwhelming the first time around, this year it looks like they will receive even more.
“We are really pleased with the response we’ve gotten so far. We have over 200 submissions already,” said Campana. “We’re well on pace to pass what we got the last time. We’ve got some really good submissions and I’m really excited to see what we have. I’m looking forward to be able to go through that pretty extensive list and start to see what we can incorporate over the next few months.”
The safety messages are posted every Friday for 24 hours on overhead Dynamic Message Signs to remind motorists to consider all aspects of driving and safety. Campana says they get very positive feedback from motorists who drive by and catch sight of the witty and creative messages.
“We’ve gotten a really great response. When people see them, we get a lot of positive feedback. Our Twitter feed tends to blow up with good feedback and good ideas,” said Campana. “So overall the reaction we’ve gotten from the public has been very positive. And that’s why we’ve continued to pursue this. It keeps people engaged, it means people are paying attention, and they want to be part of the process.”
Submissions are being accepted until January 31st. Anyone submitting messages are encouraged to consider topics about safe driving, including tie-ins with holidays and upcoming events through May of 2018. Each submission must be three lines of text with a maximum character limit of 18 per line, counting spaces.
The submissions will be evaluated to conform to regulations and edited for clarity. Submissions can be sent to their website, here.