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For Immediate release: December 28, 2012
Contact: William Sweitzer (518) 471-5300


New York State Thruway Authority toll collectors will handout 18,000 red ribbons on Friday, December 28, 2012 to mark the annual Mother’s Against Drunk Driving (MADD) “Tie One On For Safety” campaign, the Thruway Authority announced today.

The ribbons, which will also be available at the Thruway’s Travel Plazas, will be distributed to motorists upon entry at the following Thruway exits: Exit 15 (Woodbury); Exit 17 (Newburgh); Exit 24 (Albany); Exit B3 (Canaan, Mass Pike); Exit 34A (Syracuse); Exit 36 (Watertown, Binghamton); Exit 39 (Syracuse, I-690); Exit 46 (Rochester, Corning); and Exit 55 (Lackawanna).

“The New York State Thruway is one of America’s safest highways and our participation in this campaign encourages drivers to keep themselves and others safe by not drinking and driving,” said Thruway Authority Executive Director Thomas J. Madison.

“To honor lives lost and those injured as a result of impaired driving, we should do all that we can to save other families from enduring this pain,” said Michele Fonda, MADD spokeswoman. “MADD is pleased to have the continued support of the Thruway Authority and recommends planning ahead for a safe way home – designating a sober driver before drinking begins, hosting parties responsibly, and providing alternate transportation or accommodations for those who have been drinking.”

The foot-long red ribbons, a symbol chosen by MADD in 1986, are meant to be displayed on motorist’ vehicles to raise public awareness of the dangers of impaired driving and encourage all to take the pledge to drive safe, sober, and buckled up.  The “Tie One On For Safety” campaign is MADD’s longest running and most visible public awareness project.  In addition to participating in the ribbon handout, the Thruway Authority will be posting MADD’s reminder to “Drive Safe and Sober” on message boards throughout the Thruway system from December 27, 2012 to January 1, 2013.

MADD was established in 1980 to advocate safe driving. The national organization has more than 600 affiliates nationwide, with 18 chapters throughout New York State. MADD focuses on finding effective solutions to the problems of drunk driving and underage drinking, as well as supporting those who have suffered from the consequences of both.  Nationwide Insurance is the National Presenting Sponsor for MADD’s “Tie One On For Safety” red ribbon campaign.

MADD also expresses support for law enforcement crackdown efforts, particularly during the holiday season when the number of alcohol-related crashes rises.  New York State Police Troop T will be conducting specialized patrols and a fixed checkpoint in undisclosed locations along the Thruway during the holiday period.

For more information about MADD, please see the website

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