Jim Dodson is committed to reducing the number of traffic-related injuries and deaths. An area of great concern is distracted driving, a subject we want to continue to raise awareness of through postings on our blog.
Below are some numbers, compiled by the Fort Collins Coloradoan, that drive home the importance of avoiding driving distractions, especially those related to cell phone use. We have reported some of these on our site previously, but others are new.
- 16 percent of fatal crashes in 2009 involved reports of distracted driving.
- 20 percent of injury crashes in 2009 involved reports of distracted driving.
- In June more than 196 billion text messages were sent or received in the United States, up nearly 50 percent from June 2009.
- Drivers who use handheld devices are four times more likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves.
- Text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.
- Using a cell phone while driving, whether it’s handheld or hands-free, delays a driver’s reactions as much as having a blood alcohol concentration at the legal limit of .08 percent.
- Driving while using a cell phone reduces the amount of brain activity associated with driving by 37 percent.
To protect life and health by avoiding collisions caused by distracted driving, turn off your phone and keep it out of reach in the glove compartment. Your messages will be there waiting when you arrive at your destination or pull over into a safe spot to check and return calls.
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