April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Thousands die needlessly each year because people continue to use their cell phones while driving, handheld or hands-free. Join the National Safety Council this April in urging those you care about to:

  • Stop using cell phones while driving
  • Recognize that hands-free devices offer no safety benefit
  • Understand the dangers of the cognitive distraction to the brain
  • Tell others about the dangers of cell phone distracted driving

How you can get involved:

1. Take the pledge to drive cell free
2. Share our cell phone distracted driving infographics:
3. Download the 2014 campaign materials, including:
4. View and share these distracted driving videos:
 5. Share NSC messages via Facebook and Twitter using #DDAM

Minnesota Department of Public Safety/Office of Traffic Safety Media/Outreach Materials

Press Release: Raksha Walk Minnesota 2013

For Immediate Release · Contact: Wendy Khabie · Khabie Communications · 763.443.8083

A Family’s Fight for Safer Roads; October 12th event helps raise awareness of dangers of distraction-free driving

Introduction of exclusive behavior modification tool will help reduce fatalities and injuries.

(Minneapolis, MN) Vijay and Rekha Dixit want to make sure that no parent or family ever has to endure the pain and suffering they have lived with for nearly six years.

While anxiously waiting for their youngest daughter Shreya to return home to from the University of Wisconsin, Madison for a weekend visit, they got the dreaded phone call that no parent ever wants to receive – Shreya had been fatally injured in an automobile crash that was caused by a distracted driver.

With a strong desire to turn their grief into doing good, and to do what they could to help make the roads safer, Shreya’s family and friends established The Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation. Every year, the foundation sponsors a walk to raise awareness of distraction free driving. The 5K and 10K walks are scheduled for Saturday, October 12th at Purgatory Creek Recreation Area in Eden Prairie at 9AM. Mark Ritchie, Minnesota Secretary of State and his wife Nancy will lead the walk.

This year, the foundation will release the Adaptive Massive Open Online Course (aMOOC™) distant learning application that will serve as an effective driver behavior modification tool, to help combat auto fatalities and injuries. By adapting to an individual’s learning style, the aMOOC™ technology imbedded in the application delivers an innovative customized learning experience to promote the foundation’s message and core belief that real change can only happen with changes in driver behavior.

“We expect that the aMOOC™ and application will foster disciplined and responsible driving behaviors by educating new and young drivers about driver distraction and its deterrence,” says Vijay Dixit, Shreya’s father.

In addition to the release of the application and introduction of the aMOOC™, other featured displays at the walk include distracted driving simulators from AT&T Wireless that will allow participants to test their driving behaviors and a crashed car with the history of the driver who crashed brought in by Minnesotans for Safe Driving.

“It was really hard to hear that in one split second of carelessness my sister was taken,” says Shreya’s older sister Nayha Dixit. “It’s unfair for people to take advantage of the responsibilities they have when they’re on the road. I just don’t want this to happen to anybody else or any other family.”

For more information about the Raksha Walk and The Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation, please visit their website www.shreyadixit.org. To arrange for interviews with the Dixit family or representatives of the foundation, please contact Wendy Khabie at 763.443.8083 or via email wkhabie@aol.com.

Free Defeat Distracted Driving aMOOC™ e-Trainer Now Available

Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation has teamed up with Dr. Sonwalkar (Sc.D., MIT), a pioneer in adaptive aMOOC™ (Massive Open Online Course) technology to design and develop a distraction-free driving aMOOC™ application. First release is slated for October 12, 2013.  We anticipate this aMOOC™ to have a global impact on distracted driving educating millions of new and young drivers about driver distraction and deterrence.

The application will be deployed on Smart Phones, Tablets and online for world wide access at no cost to the end-users.

Please let others know and keep visiting the site for the fast approaching rollout.

Call us at 612-759-3384 for more details.

Vijay Dixit, Chairman

Eden Prairie News Article Announces Raksha Walk 2013

Building distraction-free communities, one driver at a time

By Vijay B. Dixit · Published in Eden Prairie News
Vijay B. Dixit, Shreya Dixit’s father, is chairman of the Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation.

vijay dixitThe Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation will host its annual signature event, the Raksha Walk for Distraction-free Driving, on Saturday, Oct. 12, at the Purgatory Creek Recreation Area, 13001 Technology Drive in Eden Prairie. Mark Ritchie, Minnesota’s Secretary of State, will be joined by his wife Nancy to lead the walk. The day of the walk will be proclaimed by the governor as Distraction-free Driving Day in the state of Minnesota. Just like last year, a parallel Raksha Walk will take place in Simsbury, Conn., on Oct. 19.

The foundation is named after Shreya, a resident of Eden Prairie who was lost to a distracted driver on Nov. 1, 2007, when the driver of the car in which Shreya was traveling as a passenger got distracted causing a crash that look Shreya’s life. In her short 19 years Shreya had demonstrated her love for volunteering. She continued to give after this world; Shreya was an organ donor. So it was not difficult for the Dixit family when they established a foundation to honor her memory. The foundation promotes and educates the community about distracted driving and how to combat it.

Only a few years ago, the word ‘distracted driving’ was termed a tongue twister. Now it is ubiquitous. One may attribute this problem to the driver behaviors that have failed to keep up with advances in technologies being installed in modern cars. We still seem to drive as the drivers of the ’70’s. The current texting and driving issue is a perfect example of the serious disconnect between technology and driver behavior.

In a pioneering manner, the foundation has embarked on the most ambitious project deploying the Massive Open Online Course (aMOOC™) learning technology to address this serious issue. aMOOC™ has the potential to serve as an effective driver behavior modification tool, reducing auto fatalities and injuries.

The foundation has teamed up with Synaptic Global Learning of Boston, Mass., to develop a distracted driving application based on their innovative Adaptive Massive Open Online Course aMOOC™) technology. The technology allows us to create content with five distinct cognitive learning strategies with a powerful intelligent feedback engine that renders content dynamically to match learner’s preferences. The self-paced and self-directed application offers a unique feature in its ability to assess the learning style of the user and then delivering targeted content with three Driver Behavior Modification modules. The modules are deployed on smart phones, tablets and web at no cost to the end-users. We expect the application will foster disciplined and responsible driving behaviors by educating new and young drivers about driver distraction and its deterrence.

The application will be released at the Raksha Walk on Oct. 12.

In addition to the release of the application at the Raksha Walk on Oct. 12, there are a number of other important items that will interest audiences of all ages. AT&T will bring distracted driving simulators for the attendees to test their driving behaviors. As always, Minnesotans for Safe Driving will display a crashed car with the history of the driver who crashed it.

On-site registration will start at 9 a.m. followed by a vigil and walk. This year we have added a 10K run to the events for those who love to run. You can also register online at www.shreyadixit.org. Additional information is available by calling (612) 759-3384.

Please join us to support this cause which is taking precious lives in an increasingly fast pace. As the foundation motto states, “Building Distraction-free Driving Communities, One Driver at a Time”. Please march with us towards that goal on Oct. 12, 2013, at the Raksha Walk.

Vijay Dixit on WCCO 06-12-13

Vijay on WCCO 06-12-13

Audio clip of Vijay Dixit, Founder & Chairman of Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation taling about distracted driving on the morning show.  He also disussed the state of the art Distracted Driving application created by the foundation on the Adaptive Massive Open Online Course (aMOOC™) technology. The web based application will be available for all tablet, smartphone and computer platforms.

The application will be released at the Raksha Walk on October 12, 2013 in Eden Prairie, MN.

Distracted Driving is a Multi-Headed Animal

Not a day goes by without a newspaper or TV story announcing a fatality and/or injury caused by distracted driving. It is heartbreaking to see innocent lives lost due to an action that is easily avoidable. I write this message because I am from a family grieving the loss of our 19 year old daughter Shreya who was fatally injured while riding as a passenger. The driver got distracted causing a crash killing Shreya on the spot. Although that episode occurred over five years ago, the wound it left is as fresh as it was on November 1, 2007. Our healing has been hampered by a non-ending stream of similar stories hitting us daily. [Read more...]