Arizona Department of Public Safety kicks off distracted driver campaign

CHINO VALLEY, AZ - Keep your eyes on the road.

That's the message the Department of Public Safety wants you to remember -- especially this week.

DPS just kicked off a "distracted driving campaign."

Officers will be looking for drivers texting while driving or failing to obey regular traffic laws.

They say many accidents are caused by all kinds of distracted driving, from putting on makeup to talking to other passengers in the car.     

But one of the most common offenses is using your cell phone on the road.

And texting while driving can be deadly.

It changed life forever for one Chino Valley family.

Vinnie Sorce lost his fiancée Stacy Stubbs to a texting and driving car accident in 2007.

He hopes efforts like this get the message across.

Police said 18-year-old Ashley Miller sent her last text from behind the wheel in Glendale 60 seconds before the 911 call came in reporting a deadly head-on collision.

In an instant, Sorce's fiancée Stacy died. She was 40 years old. Hours later, Miller also passed away.

Sorce didn't believe it until police showed up at his door in Chino Valley.

“When they drove to the driveway, I knew what happened. I sent the kids to their room, I somehow knew,” he said.

It happened seven years ago. But Sorce still remembers how bright the future seemed at the time. Suddenly their daughter Becca was left without a mom.

“Just getting married, having kids. Regular old American Dream stuff,” he said.

Later that same year, the city of Phoenix banned texting and driving.

It's also banned in Tucson.

“I think there should be a big campaign for the younger ones and I think the fines should be huge, so if they're fearful of getting caught, it's done its job,” Sorce said.

Sorce hopes drivers will listen so someone else doesn't lose a loved one in the same way.

“I wonder what would have happened these past seven years,” he said.

The DPS campaign runs until Tuesday, so it's a good idea to keep both hands on the wheel.

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