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Don’t Drive While Distracted

April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Distracted driving has become a deadly occurrence, with cell phone use such as texting or talking being the most common distraction.

Distracted driving is anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving.

When you're behind the wheel, your only job is to drive. Distracted driving is risky for you, and can be deadly for every nearby driver, pedestrian, bicyclist, and worker.

National Distracted Driving Awareness Month is an important observance due to the escalation in deaths on the road from driving while distracted. Additional risky behaviors while driving include eating, drinking, applying makeup, or adjusting the radio. However, distracted driving robs a driver of crucial moments necessary to avoid accidents or a potential deadly collision.

Essentially, any non-driving activity you engage in is a potential distraction and increases the risk of crashing.

According to the United States Department of Transportation, more than 3,100 people were killed in 2020 because of distracted driving.

During April, which is national Distracted Driving Awareness Month, it is a good time to regroup and take responsibility for the choices made while driving. These thoughtful actions could mean the difference between life and death.

Here are some ideas for a safe ride:

  • If you need to send a text, make a call, or answer a call, pull off the road and park your car in a safe location.
  • Designate a passenger as the “designated texter” to respond to calls or messages.
  • Do not scroll through apps while driving.
  • Put the cell phone in the trunk, glove box, or back seat of the vehicle until you arrive at your destination.
  • Let friends and family know that you will not answer your phone while driving.

During the first half of April, there may be increased law enforcement on the roadways as part of the national paid media campaign U Drive. U Text. U Pay. The campaign reminds drivers of the deadly dangers and the legal consequences, which include fines, of texting behind the wheel. For additional information on safe driving, go to www.nhtsa.gov.