Meet the Newly-Titled 'Safest Driver in L.A.': Deborra Sarei

Los Angeles Cityscapes and City Views

Meet Los Angeles' newly titled "safest driver". Not only does Deborra Sarei wear that title with pride, she is also $20,000 richer.

The L.A.’s Safest Driver contest ran this summer, and this Downey resident proved she had herself, her family and all other folks on the road in mind while behind the wheel.

The New York Times has spotlighted he 46-year-old mother for her accomplishment. I mean...let's be real...abiding by all traffic rules in Los Angeles is something worthy of a standing ovation!

According to the NYT article, Deborra takes the 105 to the 605 to Lakewood each morning. During the two-month challenge, she dropped off her daughter at school. She was one of 11,500 other entrants who reside in, or drive in and near, the city of Los Angeles.

The contest required challengers to download a mobile app that monitored phone distractions, speeds, accelerations, breaking and cornering. Can you imagine? The safe-driving queen told the the NYT that she quickly realized she’d need to "recalibrate" her driving habits. Let's be real. We all do.

We've all been there. Somedays we just want to be extra cautious and present with our driving...and Deborra tells the NYT that her cautious driving sometimes got her into trouble on busy freeways.

Quoting the article, she says: “There were moments on the freeway where people would literally cut you off to go to the next lane. It was hard to prevent causing an accident because you had to brake and then accelerate to get out of the situation.”

Sounds like L.A. The best part, Deborra says she kept the reigning title in mind the entire time. Again quoting what she told the article: “When we were in the slow lane, we’d be going at a certain speed limit and people would be whizzing by us. We started saying, ‘Well, you’re not going to be L.A.’s safest driver.’”

Earlier this year, Mayor Eric Garcetti promoted L.A.’s Safest Driver competition, which is sponsored by USAA, a financial services company — as a way to support Vision Zero and “drive home the importance of keeping our minds and eyes on the road.” Radio stations across the county promoted the competition, ultimately garnering eleven and half thousand participants.

Again, a huge congratulations to the winner - Deborra Sarei. We all know how hectic and frustrating around L.A. can be, so props to her for truly sticking to it. All bow for the safest driver in L.A.

The USAA and L.A.'s Safest Driver Competition released statistics about safe driving(after the competition concluded) - information was pulled from the New York Times article.:

  • According to the company, phone distraction among all competitors improved by 26 percent, while the speeding scores of the drivers improved by 30 percent by the end of the contest.
  • According to the company, phone distraction amongall competitorsimproved by 26 percent, while the speeding scores of the drivers improved by 30 percent by the end of the contest.

PHOTOS: Courtesy/credit ofMichelle Groskopf for The New York Times + Getty Images

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