Imagine this scenario. You’re driving home from a long day at work and you seem to be “stuck“ behind a driver who is very distracted from the road and the responsibility of driving her vehicle. We have all been there, and most of us can probably be considered offenders as well. Distracted driving refers to anything that takes your eyes or mental focus off of the road. It can be reaching for something on another seat, applying makeup, or even working your cars controls. The use of cell phones while driving has become a particular concern in recent years. This problem is particularly pronounced among young drivers.
In a recent Consumer Reports Survey, 63 percent of respondents under 30 years of age reported using a hand held phone while driving in the last 30 days; almost 1 in 3 texted. Alternately, of responders 30 and older, 41 percent used a cell phone while 9 percent sent text messages while driving in the last 30 days.
We all know of someone or have heard of someone who was severely injured or even died as result of a crash caused by a driver distracted by a cell phone and it has to stop. In the same Consumer Reports survey young drivers were asked what if anything made them reduce or even stop these behaviors. The most popular answers include, “I’ve read or heard about the dangers of distracted driving.” and “Laws that ban using a handheld cell phone and/or texting while driving”. While education is key, as proven time and time again, what else can be done? Carriers and application developers have answered the call to join the fight against distracted driving.