Topic of the Month
April Observance: National National Distracted Driving Awareness Month
What is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month?
Technology allows us to make phone calls, text, read emails, and update social media while driving. These are proven to increase crash risk. During the month of April, National Distracted Driving Awareness Month aims to draw attention to this epidemic.
What is distracted driving?
Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person's attention away from driving. All distractions endanger driver, passenger, and bystander safety. Distraction can include:
- Using a cell phone
- Eating and drinking
- Talking to passengers
- Using a navigation system
- Watching a video
- Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player
Facts and statistics
- In 2014, 3,179 people were killed and 431,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers.
- In 2013, there were nearly one in five crashes (18 percent) in which someone was injured involved distracted driving.
- Ten percent of all drivers 15 to 19 years old involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crashes. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted at the time of the crashes.
- Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling at 55 mph, that's enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded.
Apps for your smartphone
Tips from our docs
This month, our healthy tip is brought to you by Jan Kovach, MD, NMHC’s Medical Director.
There are three main types of driving distractions:
- Visual: Taking your eyes off the road;
- Manual: Taking your hands off the wheel; and
- Cognitive: Taking your mind off driving
Distracted driving activities include things like using a cell phone, texting, and eating. Using in-vehicle technologies such as navigation systems can also be sources of distraction. While any of these distractions can endanger the driver and others, texting while driving is especially dangerous because it combines all three types of distractions.
The fight to end distracted driving begins with you. Take the pledge below and make the commitment to drive phone-free today!
Distracted driving kills and injures thousands of people each year. I pledge to:
- Protect lives by never texting or talking on the phone while driving.
- Be a good passenger and speak out if the driver in my car is distracted.
- Encourage my friends and family to drive phone-free.