The number of auto accidents associated with distracted driving continue to increase across the country. But in Texas, the increase seems to be bothering safety advocates.
According to several news sources, the Texas Department of Transportation has launched a campaign that targets distracted driving. The educational campaign is known as “Talk, Text, Crash,” and it will be carried out across the state to urge drivers to put the phone down, stop texting and focus on the road ahead. To local authorities, this kind of awareness will help drivers by making them less likely to experience personal injury accidents.
The agency has indicated that in a press release that in 2014, over 100,000 distracted driving accidents were registered. At least 3,000 personal injuries have been linked to the accidents while 483 deaths were also linked to the crashes.
To officials, distractions cause one in every 5 traffic accidents. While distracted driving is usually associated with phone use, texting and driving is not the only factor that leads to accidents.
Other activities such as using other electronics, talking to others sharing the vehicle, or dealing with children and pets are also distracting.
In Texas, 45 percent of all drivers admit to using a cell phone while behind the wheel while 83 percent of drivers surveyed by the state admit to understanding that talking on the phone while driving is highly dangerous. Multitasking, the campaign says, is not healthy. If drivers are not aware of the risks, they are more likely to become more distracted over time.
While most states in the country have passed their own distracted driving laws that ban the use of phones to text or talk while behind the wheel, Texas hasn’t passed a similar law as a state. Several counties and local city councils have passed their own distracted driving ordinances, however.
To safety advocates, the state will only address the distracted driving accidents when its legislature passes a distracted driving ban. But to safety experts, awareness campaigns are also important since drivers who are not aware of the real consequences of multitasking while behind the wheel are more likely to use their phones while driving.
If you’re a driver and you’re still unsure of what the real consequences of distracted driving are, remember that in 2013 alone, 3,154 people were killed in auto accidents caused by distracted drivers. Over 424,000 people were injured during the same period as a result of distracted driving accidents.
For more details on the Texas distracted driving accident numbers, follow this link.