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What’s the problem?

 Every single time someone takes their focus
  off the road – even if just for a moment – they
  put their lives and the lives of others in
 Distracted driving is unsafe, irresponsible,
  and, in a split-second, its consequences can
  be devastating.
 There’s no call or email so important that it
  can’t wait.
Typical bad news

 2009: Nearly 5,500 killed in
  distracted-driving crashes, and
  450,000 injured.
 Percentage of distracted drivers in
  fatal crashes was 11% in 2009, up
  from 7% in 2005.
 This data is the tip of the iceberg.
Data, cont.
               995 fatalities involved a cell
                phone as a distraction.
               24,000 injuries involved a
                cell phone as a distraction.
               Drivers who use hand-held
                devices are four times as
                likely to get in injury-
                producing crashes.
What is distracted driving?

 Visual — taking your eyes off
  the road
 Manual — taking your hands
  of the wheel
 Cognitive — taking your
  mind off what you’re doing
For example

 Using a cell phone
 Eating and drinking
 Talking to passengers
 Grooming
 Reading, including maps
 Changing the radio station, CD, or Mp3 player
 Using a PDA or navigation system
 Watching a video
Younger drivers most at risk

 Under-20 age group: greatest
  proportion of distracted drivers.
 16 percent of these young drivers
  involved in fatal crashes were
 Lack of driving experience = critical
  misjudgments when distracted.
But they aren’t alone

 Every day, more than 800,000
  vehicles are being driven by someone
  using a hand-held cell phone.
 You need to watch out for them—
  they aren’t watching out for you!
The key message

 Stop multi-tasking while driving.
 Just “Put It Down” and concentrate on the road.
 Be a good example for your peers and your
 When you’re a passenger, make the driver pay
Is “hands-free” OK?

 Research shows that both hands-free
  and hand-held devices are distracting
  enough to degrade a driver’s
 Driver is more likely to miss key visual
  and audio cues needed to avoid a crash.
Publicizing the issue

 NFL preseason, ESPN tour-bus
  slogan: “Stop Distracted
  Driving.” 15,000 miles of
 Jonas Brothers and American
  Idol winner Jordin Sparks --
  Allstate Insurance’s “X the
  TXT” campaign.
 Oprah Winfrey entire show of
  victims’ stories, promotion of
  “National No Phone Zone
State and local laws

 In 2009, legislatures in 43 states considered
  more than 270 distracted driving bills.
 30 states have banned texting while driving
 8 states have banned handheld use behind
  the wheel.
 By Presidential mandate, all 4 million federal
  employees are prohibited from texting while
Tools and resources
 http://www.distraction.gov/
 News, PSAs, “Faces of Distracted Driving”
Tools and resources, cont.
 http://www.nsc.org/safety_road/Distracted_
 Research, posters, studies
National Safety Council posters
10 Tips for managing
 Turn off your phone or switch to silent mode
  when you get in the car.
 Spread the word. Set up a special message to
  tell callers that you’re driving.
 Pull over if you need to make a call.
 Use your passengers. Ask a passenger to make
  the call for you.
 X the Text. Don’t text, surf the web or read your
  email while driving.
10 Tips, cont.

 Know the law for your state and city.
 Prepare. Review maps and directions before
  you start to drive.
 Secure your pets before you start to drive.
 Keep the kids safe. Pull over to a safe
  location if they’re distracting you.
 Focus on the task at hand. Avoid anything
  that takes your mind and eyes off the road.

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