SAN FRANCISCO: The first PSA from Uber and Mothers Against Drunk Driving is airing on the radio this holiday weekend, reaching many riders and drivers in the car as they celebrate Independence Day.
The 30-second spot is playing on the radio in 200 markets across the country, said Nairi Hourdajian, head of global communications at Uber. Listeners have the opportunity to take a safe-driving pledge and can donate to MADD. The app-driven car-hailing service is matching donations made through Sunday up to $25,000, said Hourdajian.
"Not only are citizens across the country in the car listening to the radio, drivers are as well," she said. "[We] feel this is really effective at meeting people where they are."
Uber has a footprint that reaches about 70% of the US population, Hourdajian added, not just large cities on the East and West coasts.
"We may be a tech company that came up in Silicon Valley, but we’re very much a part of the fabric of where we operate," she said. "That’s why we chose radio."
The campaign is also running online, including on Twitter and Facebook.
Fourth of July weekend is "one of the most dangerous on the roads," said Amy George, SVP of marketing and communications at MADD, and the holiday falling on a Saturday exacerbates the risk.
In the radio spot, MADD national president Colleen Sheehey-Church introduces an Uber driver who was also a long-time paramedic. She notes that the employee has seen "more drunk-driving tragedies than anybody should ever have to see."