Tackling Your Texting While Driving is Dangerous to Drivers and Against the Law in Missouri.
Have you had a friend, a family member or an acquaintance get
into an accident due to texting?
We all have important phone calls and texts…some more important then others. Is it really worth getting into an accident over or even losing your life? Is it worth putting other drivers in danger because your text just cannot wait until the next stop? Did you know that your chances of getting into an accident increases to 23X higher then the average driver not distracted by texts? In 2011 statistics show that 23% of drivers were in an accident because of texting while driving. Several things can cause and out of control experience due to texting and not paying attention to the road or the vehicle you are operating. Here are some fun facts and Tips about texting you may want to know.
Fun Texting Facts
Fact # 1
Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling at 55mph, that’s enough time to cover the length of a football field. (2009, VTTI)
Fact # 2
Reaching for a phone, dialing, texting and other uses of portable devices increased the risk of getting into a crash by three times. (2009, VTTI)
Fact # 3
11% of all drivers under 20 involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted. (2012, NHTSA)
Top of Mind Texting Tips
Out of Sight, out of Mind.
When you’re in the car, put your phone where you can’t get it. A place where you won’t even be tempted to look for it. No phone. No texting.
Silence is Golden.
Turn those notifications off. The less you hear your phone, the less tempted you’ll be to respond while you’re driving.
Find Your App.
An app can help you stop texting and driving. Download your fave and forget about it in the car.
Designate a Texter
Borrow thumbs from a friend. Or lend yours to a friend. Passengers get the privilege of texting while in motion.
Can You Tell if Another Driver is Texting?
Typically it looks no different then a drunk driver in some cases. Look for swerving of the vehicle, crossing center road lines, driving too slow, looking down instead of at the road, jerking of the vehicle, or someone approaching you to fast at a stoplight or stop sign. As a driver it is your responsibility to pay attention to your surroundings at all times. Your well-being or life is not worth someone else’s lack of attention. Whether it’s in your control or not be aware of the roadways and their drivers. Be a good example.
Current State Laws Currently there is no national ban on texting or using a wireless phone while driving, but a number of states have passed laws banning texting or wireless phones or requiring hands-free use of wireless phones while driving. For more information on state laws, visit www.ghsa.org/html/stateinfo/laws/cellphone_laws.html.
What You Can Do to Help Younger Drivers from Texting While Driving. The study by Cohen Children’s Medical Center found that texting and driving was responsible for more than 3,000 fatalities among teenagers last year, while drinking and driving claimed the lives of 2,700 teens.
Give Clear Instructions – Give teen drivers simple, clear instructions not to use their wireless devices while driving. According to Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association, the easiest way to say it is: “On the road, off the phone.” Before new drivers get their licenses, discuss the fact that taking their eyes off the road – even for a few seconds – could cost someone injury or even death.
Lead by Example – Children learn from their parent’s behavior. No one should text and drive. Be an example for your children and if you need to text or talk on the phone, pull over to a safe place.
Become Informed and Be Active – Review the information in our Clearinghouse and the literature on the websites mentioned above. Set rules for yourself and your household regarding distracted driving. Tell family, friends and organizations to which you belong about the importance of driving without distractions. Take information to your children’s’ schools and ask that it be shared with students and parents.
For More Information
For more information about wireless devices and driving, visit the FCC’s Distracted Driving website. For information on other communications issues, visit the FCC’s Consumer website, or contact the FCC’s Consumer Center by calling 1-888-CALL-FCC (1-888-225-5322) voice or 1-888-TELL-FCC (1-888-835-5322) TTY; faxing 1-866-418-0232.