According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it’s very likely that more than nine people in the US are killed each day due to crashes involving a distracted driver. We can also estimate that at any moment of the day, 660,000 Americans are using some type of mobile device while driving. This is a frightening thought that motivated us to spread the word about National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
In Pennsylvania, it’s been illegal to text and drive since March 2012. The law prohibits any driver from using an Interactive Wireless Communication Device (IWCD) to send, read, or write a text message while the vehicle is in motion. The term IWCD encompasses cell phones, digital assistants, mobile computers, and similar devices. A $50 fine is the common punishment for conviction.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted research that found distracted driving is a particularly big problem for teen drivers. In fact, they found that distraction was a factor in 6 out of 10 teen crashes. The most common forms of distraction included:
- Interacting with passengers
- Cell phone use
- Looking at something inside the vehicle
- Looking at something outside the vehicle
- Singing or dancing to music
- Reaching for an object
We hope this information helps you to think twice before reaching for that cell phone while driving. For a visual account of the dangers of distracted driving, check out this video released by AAA.