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News Release

Friday, February 19, 2010

FARMERS INSURANCE HOT SPOTS IMPACTS TRAFFIC SAFETY AT SCHOOLS
Return to Likelike Elementary School Continues Pedestrian Awareness

Responding to a plea from Likelike Elementary School to help remind drivers to slow down in an area where a student was hit last school year, Farmers Insurance Hawaii employees held a Hot Spots traffic safety event this morning to urge rush hour drivers to watch out for students.

Farmers Insurance Hawaii joined with Likelike Elementary School students, teachers and parents at the school, along with the Honolulu Police Department's Community Policing Team from District 5, to encourage safe driving habits through a morning of sign-waving, activities and safety events.

The event marked the third time Hot Spots visited Likelike school since the program started more than eight years ago. Armed with handmade signs and banners, more than 50 Farmers Hawaii staff members and the school community lined the sidewalks to alert drivers to watch out for children crossing the streets to school. Sign making materials for the students were donated by Farmers Insurance partner Education Works.

"Our Hot Spots sign waving last year made a difference, and that's why we are back," said Michele Saito, President of Farmers Insurance Hawaii. "Thankfully no one has been hit since the pedestrian accident last school year, and we want to keep it that way. We are concerned anytime we hear of a pedestrian accident in the area and want to remind drivers that they need to pay attention to their surroundings and to students crossing streets near schools."

Palama Street is a main thoroughfare to reach the H-1 freeway in the morning. Traffic flows in both directions, with students trying to cross and street and being dropped off in front of the school. Parked cars on both sides of the road make it hard for drivers to see pedestrians crossing the street.

Farmers Insurance also distributed a traffic safety booklet produced by employees to all students as well as thank-you gifts to the Likelike teachers and staff.

The Hot Spots Traffic Safety Program was created in 2002 in response to the growing public safety concerns caused by speeders. To date, more than 50 Hot Spots have been identified across the states. Schools or concerned community members interested in holding a Hot Spots event in their neighborhood should contact the Farmers Insurance Community Relations Department at 543-0411.

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