Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Distracted driving on the rise: It can wait

The telephone has come a long way since it was first invented in 1876. Today, those telephones are portable mini-computers that help us navigate this fast-paced world.  
We may even feel the constant pull to multi-task and gather more information while we travel.

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as multi-tasking. If your mind is focused on your cell phone, the radio, eating, or even talking with passengers while you drive, there could be deadly consequences. 

There were 432 traffic fatalities in Kansas last year and The National Safety Council said that 40,200 people died in crashes across the United States. 

Many of those fatalities could be attributed to distracted driving, including the use of mobile phones.

The Federal Communications Commission has some sobering distracted driving statistics:

- Over 8 people are killed and 1,161 are injured daily in incidents reported as distraction
affected crashes in the United States.

- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that in 2015, there were 3,477
people killed and an estimated additional 391,000 people injured in motor vehicle crashes  
involving distracted drivers.

At any given daylight moment across America, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell
phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving, a number that has held steady since

- In 2015, the National Occupant Protection Use Survey reported that handheld cell phone
use continued to be highest among 16-24 year old drivers.

For as often as we discuss the dangers of distracted driving, the numbers continue to rise. We need your help to get the message out to friends, family, colleagues, and neighbors that lives are on the line every time they use a phone while driving.

Be an example- You know that it is not safe to text and drive. You may know that no message, snapchat, social media post or Tweet is worth risking lives over. So act on that knowledge and teach others to do the same.  If you are teaching a new driver how to operate a vehicle, educate them on the importance of putting your phone away.

If you need to make a phone call, or check your phone, pull over to a safe place and answer or text before you return to the roadway.

Speak up- If you see a driver you are riding with texting or using social media, tell them to put their phone away while they are driving. It may seem hard to speak up, but be brave - it could save lives. 

Check out this powerful video from NHTSA and see how sending a message while driving could be the last words someone will ever say.

No comments:

Post a Comment