Police Cracking Down This Week On Texting & Driving

Police Cracking Down This Week On Texting & Driving
Do Not Disturb While Driving
Credit: Apple.
October is National Distracted Driving Month -- after being moved from April this year due to COVID-19. To help with education efforts, the U.S. Department of Transportation�s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced it is supporting National Distracted Driving Awareness Week with a $5 million public awareness advertising campaign. During NHTSA�s U Drive. U Text. U Pay. high-visibility campaign, law enforcement officers nationwide will be looking for drivers texting or using their phones behind the wheel.

�Distracted driving can cause accidents and worse � this educational campaign reminds drivers to focus on the road and drive safely,� said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

Safety regulators say distracted driving can be a deadly mistake. In 2018, 2,841 people were killed and 400,000 were injured in crashes involving distracted drivers. Click here for NHTSA�s 2018 Distracted Driving Traffic Safety Facts.

�Taking your eyes off the road for a moment is all it takes to cause a crash. No call or text is worth a life,� NHTSA Deputy Administrator James Owens said. �When you�re behind the wheel, stay focused on the road in front of you � not your phone. And know that no vehicles on the market today are capable of driving themselves�you�re in charge and responsible for safely operating your vehicle even if it is equipped with the most advanced driver assistance features.�

The U Drive. U Text. U Pay. high-visibility enforcement campaign, now in its seventh year, is supported by a $5 million national media buy. New ads in both English and Spanish will air on television, radio, and digital platforms targeting the high-risk driver category, ages 18 to 34.

To prevent tragedies due to distracted driving, everyone should:

  • Turn off electronic devices and put them out of reach before starting to drive.
  • Be good role models for young drivers and set a good example. Talk with your teens about responsible driving.
  • Speak up when a driver uses an electronic device behind the wheel. Offer to make the call for the driver, so his or her full attention stays on the road.
  • Always wear your seat belt. Seat belts are your best defense against unsafe drivers.
  • Be alert for pedestrians and cyclists, especially those who may themselves be distracted.