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Distracted Driving Awareness Month Targeting Drivers

April is national Distracted Driving Awareness Month. In San Diego and across California, law enforcement will be out in force.

The California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), California Highway Patrol (CHP), and more than 200 law enforcement agencies recently announced that enhanced enforcement will be conducted throughout the month of April. The aim of the “It’s Not Worth It!” campaign is to emphasize that a phone call or text isn’t worth a hefty fine or a collision.

The recent dramatic rise in cell phone use behind the wheel has greatly increased the number of collisions. In recent years, hundreds have been killed and thousands seriously injured in California distracted driving accidents. Nationally, an estimated 3,331 people died in 2011.

Texting and talking while driving are also proven to be dangerous. Cell phone use can significantly reduce the brain functions needed for safe driving, sometimes up to 37 percent. Studies have also shown that text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.

With this in mind, we joined the California Office of Traffic Safety in encouraging drivers to adopt the following safe driving behaviors:

  • Turn off your phone and/or put it out of reach while driving
  • Include in your outgoing message that you can’t answer while you are driving
  • Don’t call or text anyone at a time when you think they may be driving
  • Adjust controls and set your song playlist before you set out on the road
  • Stay alert and keep your mind on the task of driving- often after a long day at work or a not-so-restful night’s sleep, people’s minds can wander when behind the wheel. If you find yourself daydreaming – clear your head and focus on the road