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PA Turnpike Launches Video Game-Themed Campaign for Top Score Against Distracted Driving.

Home News Stories from the Turnpike Distracted Driving is No Game

Distracted driving is no game. You only get an extra life in video games.

And with most of us carrying around a pocket full of distractions, it’s become increasingly important to remember that if you crash, you can’t just pump in another quarter and start over.

It could be “Game Over.”

“Distracted driving is a big problem with our drivers today,” Pennsylvania Turnpike Director of Traffic Engineering and Operations Tom Macchione said. “The majority of all crashes – 85% of them – involve a driver error of some sort.”

To help combat this problem, the PA Turnpike last week launched its “No Game” campaign, using a Nintendo-esque theme to illustrate that getting behind the wheel of a car is not like playing “Mario Kart.” You can check out the new website here.

Perhaps the most impactful video on the new site shows how a moment of distraction can lead to consequences with no reset button.

Distracted Driving is No Game ( 

The video previews a game, which will be launched in April during Distracted Driver Awareness Month, along with digital and radio ads, billboards and more. The Turnpike’s marketing team developed the idea of using a game to engage the younger audience, which is a significant part of the distracted driving problem nationwide.  

“We thought it would be compelling for them to see what would happen if their attention is taken away from the roadway, even for a short period of time,” Manager of Communications and Marketing Rosanne Placey said.

National studies show one in five people admitted to driving while distracted, and on the Turnpike, that’s 100,000 vehicles worth of distracted drivers daily, she pointed out. 

In 2023, distracted driving was the primary factor in three of the Turnpike’s 18 fatal crashes. Though last year saw fewer total fatalities than the year before, more of those crashes involved distracted driving as the primary factor.

Distracted driving has been a problem for a long time, but during the pandemic, with fewer people on the road, many drivers developed some bad habits that, four years later, have only gotten worse.   

According to the “No Game” campaign, someone sending the average-length text message while driving 55 mph will have traveled the length of a football field while distracted.  

“That’s scary that you’re driving 100 yards with no eyes on the road,” Macchione said. “If you’re texting, you’re six times more dangerous than an intoxicated driver. That’s called being ‘digitally drunk.’”

Distractions are more than just texting. It’s watching videos, checking social media, eating, adjusting the radio, and even reading a book while driving. But campaigns like “No Game” can help level up driver safety. One way to bring about a change is to sign the campaign’s pledge to drive distraction free. And Macchione’s advice is to always drive like a child is watching you to prevent passing on bad habits to the next generation.  

And to show them that driving is no game.

“You don’t have an extra life,” Macchione said. “In real life, if you make a mistake, you can pay with your life.”



By Steve Marroni, Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, Communications Specialist