Teen Driver – News agencies out of North Florida are reporting on an interesting topic that I thought was an interesting blog. In Washington state, a 17-year-old girl pulled off a “hat trick” of distractions while driving along a road last week and is now facing criminal charges. The girl was heading north on SR-503 in south west Washington near milepost 13 outside of Battle Ground when a car ahead of her slowed to turn into a driveway. That driver noticed the teen coming up fast behind her and tried to veer to the right, but her car was struck in the back left corner. The teen’s car was spun around and rolled over, while the victim’s car was knocked into a ditch, according to troopers. The teen was taken to Legacy Salmon Creek Hospital for treatment of minor injuries. The victim in the car ahead of her wasn’t injured. Investigators say the teen admitted to troopers she was texting, using Facetime and Snapchatting while driving. The police report says the teen will be charged with reckless driving. A spokesperson for Washington State Patrol says the crash is an example of extreme distracted driving and reason to restart the conversation on the dangers of distracted driving. According to the Centers for Disease Control, everyday in the United States, on average, 9 people are killed in distracted driving-related accidents and more than 1,100 are injured.
The U.S. Government has a website dedicated to preventing distracted driving. On the site, they offer advice for parents with young drivers. Among the tips, they suggest parents make a pledge with their driving-age children and discuss state laws. Click here: http://www.distraction.gov/ and here: https://www.transportation.gov/tags/distracted-driving
* 80% of crashes, and 65% of near crashes, involved some form of driver inattention within 3 seconds of the incident.
* 57% of American drivers admit to texting behind the wheel. (I’m guessing more actually, but some probably didn’t want to admit to texting n driving.)
* Study: 74% of Americans admit to distracted driving, 19% using web
* 89% of Americans adults think sending text messages or e-mails while driving is distracting, dangerous and should be outlawed.