Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Distracted Driving Accidents on the Rise

The Southlake Police Department is again urging adults and teens to keep their hands on the wheel and not drive distracted.

This safety reminder is even more important with the release of the popular app, Pokémon Go, which has resulted in serious accidents and injuries across the country. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), accidents involving distracted drivers are on the rise.

For the first time in over 50 years, traffic deaths have increased eight percent despite decades of vehicle design improvements and traffic safety advancements. Our youngest and most inexperienced drivers are most at risk, with 16% of all distracted driving crashes involving drivers under the age of 20. Young drivers also make up 27% of distracted drivers involved in fatal crashes across the country.

Parents did you know?

Reckless and distracted driving is the #1 Killer of teens. One quarter of teens say they have responded to text messages at least one or more times while driving. Police Chief James Brandon says, “If it has been awhile since you’ve talked to your teens about distracted driving, now would be a good time to sit down with them again and remind them of the dangers of distracted driving, including playing the popular new game, Pokémon Go, while driving.”

Teens are not the only ones guilty of driving distracted. Adults admit to the behavior as well. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), distracted driving causes more than 100,000 traffic accidents each year in Texas alone.

While using a cell phone when driving is the most common offense, there are many ways in which a driver can be distracted. Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving including:

  • Posting to social media
  • Playing Pokémon Go
  • Checking email
  • Eating
  • Grooming
  • Reading
  • Programming a navigation system
  • Watching a video
  • Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player

Help us reduce accidents and fatalities. Drive now – talk later. The message is simple and it can save lives.