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States Step Up Efforts to Combat Distracted Driving

ghsa-logoThe Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) has released its second look at how states are dealing with the problem of distracted driving. The report, titled “2013 Distracted Driving: Survey of the States”, reveals that more states are enacting and enforcing laws directed at distracted Drivers.

Among the key findings:

  • 39 states and the District of Columbia (DC) identify Distracted Driving as a priority issue, a 43 percent increase from 28 states in 2010;
  • 47 states and DC now have specific laws prohibiting various forms of distracted driving that impact most drivers. Of those states, 41 ban texting by all drivers, compared with only 28 states in 2010 (a 45 percent increase);
  • Law enforcement officers in almost every state are actively enforcing distracted driving laws, a significant change since 2010;
  • 47 states and DC are taking steps to educate the public about the threat of distracted driving, a 26 percent increase from 37 states in 2010;
  • Four states – California, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Texas – are working with affiliates of the National Safety Council to provide education and technology-use policies to major employers. Delaware and Kentucky have corporate outreach coordinators in their highway safety offices that are responsible for working with employers;
  • Currently, 47 states and DC collect distracted driving-related data via police crash reports and 18 states report that changes and/or upgrades to data collection efforts are planned for the coming year. Several states are also collaborating with colleges and universities to conduct observational surveys and analyze distracted driving crash data to better understand the problem.

GHSA Deputy Executive Director Jonathan Adkins stated:

This latest report confirms that states recognize the threat posed by distraction and are working hard in several areas to address it – States face major obstacles including a lack of funding for enforcement, media, and education. That, coupled with the motoring public’s unwillingness to put down their phones, despite disapproving of and recognizing the danger of this behavior, makes for a challenging landscape.

See news release here: http://www.ghsa.org/html/media/pressreleases/2013/20130717distraction.html
At Blank-it, we know that driver distraction should be a primary area of concern for all drivers and employers, one that has to be addressed through policy, education and the use of technology-based solutions.

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