The Arkansas Police announced that April is “Distracted Driving Prevent Month”. The campaign is a result of Arkansas law enforcement agencies joining the national “U Drive U Text You Pay” campaign in an effort to prevent and stop distracted driving. The agencies have all pledged their support to help spread the importance of drivers focusing on the roads, and not on their mobile devices. Their message is that distracted drivers are not only a danger to themselves, but to everyone in their car and everyone on the road.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2015 alone, 3,477 people were killed and over 391,000 injured in car wrecks caused by a distracted driver, and those numbers are increasing.
Colonel Bill Bryant, Direction of the Arkansas State Police and the Governor’s Highway Safety Representative said, “Everyone should know that using cell phones while driving is considered distracted driving. In addition to enforcing the state’s distracted driving law, we also want to educate drivers about the dangers of cell phone use and other distractions while operating a motor vehicle.”
People are under-educated when it comes to understanding what distracted driving is and how just a second or two of distraction can cause an accident. Bryant said, “Anything that takes your eyes off the road, hands off the wheel, or mind off the task of driving is a hazard. Texting while driving only increases the risks because the process combines all three types of distractions – visual, manual and cognitive.”
The campaign is not just geared to teenage and younger drivers. Many adults engage in the practice of distracted driving.
“We hope that everyone will get the message and understand the risk of injuries and death caused by distracted driving, [and] then change their driving habits,” Colonel Bryant said.
Regardless of the driver’s age, Arkansas law prohibits the use of a hand-held mobile device for texting, emailing or accessing the Internet while driving. It is also a “primary offense” law, which means a law enforcement officer can initiate a traffic stop without observing any other violation.
Bryant said, “Drivers should be aware of all state laws related to distracted driving, particularly related to the prohibition of using a hand-held cell phone while traveling through school or highway work zones. All drivers under the age of 18 are prohibited from using a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle. Drivers 18 to 20 years using a cell phone are required to use a hands-free device.”
The national distracted driving effort focuses on ways to change the behavior of drivers through legislation, enforcement, public awareness and education which are the same tools that have been used to curb drunk driving and increase seat belt use.
For more information on distracted driving issues, visit www.Distraction.gov www.TrafficSafetyMarketing.gov or contact the Arkansas Highway Safety Office at (501) 618-8136. For more on Arkansas’ ongoing Toward Zero Deaths campaign to eliminate preventable traffic fatalities, visit www.TZDarkansas.org.
Folks, I can’t say it enough. Please do not text and drive and please keep your total focus on driving.
Please share this post so that others can benefit from the information. Thank you.
If you have any questions about this article or any area of personal injury law, please refer to the contact info below.
Also, if you are interested, please read my other personal injury articles at http://blog.petermillerlaw.com.
The Law Offices of Peter Miller
1601 S. Broadway
Little Rock, AR 72206
The content of this blog was prepared by Law Office of Peter Miller, P.A. for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or provide legal advice. Laws differ by jurisdiction, and the information in this blog may not apply to you. You should seek the assistance of an attorney licensed to practice in your state before taking any action. Using this blog site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Law Office of Peter Miller, P.A. Attorney-client relationships can only be created by written contract.
Attribution: National Safety Council (http://creativecommons.org/licenses)
Source: Arkansas State Police website