The U.S. Department of Transportation, is striving to end the dangerous practice of distracted driving on our nation’s roadways. Distracted driving is a serious, life-threatening practice and Edwards & Ragatz wants to help spread the message. You are the key to preventing distracted driving. The message is simple — Put it down! You can see the faces and hear the message for yourself at Distraction.gov
Distraction is defined by NHTSA as a specific type of inattention that occurs when drivers divert their attention away from the task of driving to focus on another activity instead. These distractions can be electronics, such as navigation systems and cell phones, or more conventional distractions, such as interacting with passengers and eating. These tasks can affect drivers in different ways and are categorized into the following three types:
- Visual- taking your eyes off the road
- Manual- taking your hands off the wheel
- Cognitive- taking your mind off the road.
Drivers Simply Can’t Do Two Things At Once.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, drivers who use hand-held devices while driving are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves or others.
- Drivers who use hand-held devices while driving are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves or others.
- The portion of drivers reportedly distracted at the time of the fatal crashes increased from 7 percent in 2005 to 11 percent in 2009.
- One of the most commonly recognized distractions is cell phone use. About 89 percent, or approximately 277 million of all Americans, have a cell phone, according to CTIA “ The Wireless Association. For many, it is the only kind of telephone they possess.
- In a recent NHTSA survey, most individuals (77 percent) reported that they talk on the phone while driving at least some of the time.
It is not just Distracting Behavior- it can be Deadly Behavior
In 2008 alone, nearly 6,000 people died and more than half-a-million injuries occurred simply because people were not paying attention to the road. People’s conversations can wait. The chances of causing a crash that could ruin lives is just too great.
Young Drivers Are Especially At Risk.
Young drivers are at risk of distracted driving”especially men and women under 20 years of age. Their lack of driving experience can contribute to critical misjudgments if they become distracted. Not surprisingly, they text more than any other age group and the numbers of young drivers who text are only increasing.
Everyone Has A Personal Responsibility
With more portable technology now than ever, driver distractions have risen to unprecedented numbers. We live in a world where people expect instant, real-time information 24 hours-a-day and those desires do not stop just because people get behind the wheel. Drivers simply do not realize the dangers that are posed when they take their eyes and minds off the road and their hands off the wheel and focus on activities other than driving.
Reference Link for guidance on improving road safety, particularly among younger drivers.