As reported by HealthDay, almost half of high school students in the U.S. still text while driving. Health statistician at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Emily O’Malley Olsen, author of the study, said that looking away from the road ahead for only a second or two can get texting drivers into trouble, so the number of high school students texting is a major concern. Some of the blame falls on pediatricians and parents who fail to advise teens of the risks of texting while driving.
On May 13, 2013, the research was published online, and it will be published in print in the June issue of the journal Pediatrics. The research was conducted using responses from more than 8,500 U.S. high school students who were age 16 or older. The study found that one in four students texted daily and overall 44.5 percent admitted to texting behind the wheel. Read the rest »
U.S. Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood said Tuesday, January 29, that his plans are to step down from his position in the Obama administration. LaHood is well known for his efforts to curb distracted driving as well as a number of other important safety efforts. LaHood told the Associated Press that he informed President Obama of his intentions one week after the election. LaHood, age 67, served seven Congressional terms before accepting the position of Transportation Secretary.
During his tenure, LaHood implemented thousands of projects to improve our nation’s infrastructure. Roads and bridges were replaced and/or improved; transit and highway programs were overhauled, providing states with the flexibility needed in spending federal monies; and auto makers were impacted with tougher new-vehicle fuel efficiency standards. Under his guidance the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) put into place a set of new rules limiting the maximum amount of time pilots can spend on duty and in flight assignments. Limits were placed on the number of overnight hours pilots could fly. Read the rest »
Distracted driving is a dangerous nationwide epidemic that is increasingly a cause of traffic accidents across the U.S. and injures and kills thousands each year. One exceptionally unsafe form of driver distraction is texting and driving, a dangerous habit that can increase the chances a person will be involved an auto accident by 23 times. In order to try and end this dangerous habit and encourage drivers to be safer on the roads, telecommunications giant AT&T created the “It Can Wait” campaign to focus on educating the public on the dangers of texting and driving. The ultimate goal is to save lives, while making the act of texting while driving as unacceptable as drinking and driving.
As part of the “It Can Wait” campaign, AT&T has a number of initiatives and efforts to inform the public about the extraordinary risks of texting and driving. On September 19, the company is encouraging drivers across the nation to take part in the “No Text on Board-Pledge Day,” which is a pledge for a lifelong commitment to never text and drive. Drivers can take the pledge by visiting http://itcanwait.com/ and can help spread the important message of this campaign by telling family and friends to join in the movement. Read the rest »
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that the Fourth of July holiday has been one of the deadliest days of the year for teen drivers in the U.S. from 2006 to 2010, according to TorqueNews.com. Specifically, over 800 fatalities have occurred on Independence Day during the four year period. The Allstate Foundation states that if current projections hold true, 140 motorists may be killed during this national holiday, and of this projected number, teens are especially susceptible. A new study conducted by The Allstate Foundation reveals that teenage drivers are mainly vulnerable to a deadly distracted driving accident as nearly half of all teens studied report that texting is their greatest distraction while behind the wheel.
Congress is presently considering legislation that will urge states to enact teen driving laws, also known as Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL). According to recent research, states with GDL policies have significantly reduced traffic accident-related fatalities by as much as 40 percent in states where the laws have been enacted. The Allstate Foundation asserts that GDL implementation across the nation may save $13.6 billion per year and save 2,000 lives. Read the rest »
The issue of distracted driving and its dangers has increasingly gained attention from the media, the federal government, and concerned citizens. However, though the dangers of using a cell phone behind the wheel have been well documented, Nebraska state officials do not see a need to change the state’s current driving and texting law, according to Nebraska Radio Network.
The law presently does prohibit texting and driving, but it is only a secondary offense, meaning you have to be pulled over for a primary offense (such as speeding) before you can be charged and/or ticketed. Nebraska’s governor knows the issue of distracted driving is serious, but feels that it should be left up to an individual to be a cautious driver, not enact a new state law to dictate the everyday actions of NE residents. Read the rest »