Drivers have admitted to using their phones and even playing games behind the wheel to Road Safe North East, prompting a new campaign.
The community group has created its own promotions to prevent mobile phone use for a trial at Yarrawonga.
Bunnings Yarrawonga is supporting the initiative, which will see signs placed at the exit to the store's carpark.
Executive officer John Weinert said 100 people had been surveyed prior to the signs going up.
"Half of them admitted to using their phones, and 20 per cent were handheld," he said.
"They're not just using it to make a call, some are texting, and one person said they were using it to play games while they were driving.
"We asked people when is it safe to use your phone while driving and 90 per cent of them said never.
"But people are still doing it.
"There's nothing that important that you can't wait until you pull over or the end of your journey."
Five slogans have been created and will be rotated at the site at Bunnings Yarrawonga.
This will be supported by social media messaging.
"Probably after three months we'll do another survey and see if it makes any difference," Mr Weinert said.
"It's only a pilot, but if we can show that it has potential, there's no reason it can't get picked up more widely.
"It's been in the making now for probably two years.
"I saw this idea, with a person in the rear vision mirror, in South Australia and when I first saw it, the hair stood up at the back of my neck.
"It's a very simple message - who are you leaving behind?
"If you get killed because of a few seconds of distraction, it's not about you, it's your family, friends and loved ones who then have to cope with what's happened."
Road Safe North East is a volunteer-run group that works with government and other organisations to deliver safety messaging in schools and the wider community.
Mr Weinert said in his 20 years involved, mobile phone use had become a deadly part of driver behaviour.
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"This is as important from our point of view as drink driving was and still is," he said.
Mary Vescio said there were new technologies people could use to quell their temptations, such as a smartphone program that responds to texts advising that the receiver is driving.
"We've all probably been there and touched our phones when we shouldn't have," she said.
"For most people, if they've had something happen to them they'll stop - a couple people said they'd had a fine or a near miss.
"It's not worth it."