Traffic fatalities were going down. The push to reduce traffic fatalities began decades ago. This push was primarily associated with reducing the number of accidents connected to drunk driving. A combination of education efforts, laws put in place making it illegal to drink and drive, steep penalties for violating these laws and increased enforcement measures was used, and it worked.
Texting while driving is against the law, this is not a newsflash. What is a newsflash is the fact the courts are looking into holding both parties to the conversation accountable if the texting results in a crash. That means Joe Schmoe, sitting on his couch texting sweet messages to his girlfriend while she drives home from work could be just as guilty as his girlfriend if she gets into a crash.
The United States Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is taking April's Distracted Driving Month seriously. The agency is moving forward with a number of efforts to bring attention to the dangers of distracted driving. These efforts include:
Using electronic devices and driving is risky and illegal, in many cases, in Connecticut. The state prohibits handheld devices for all drivers, hands-free and handheld cell phone use for bus drivers and novice drivers and texting for all drivers. However, the legal use of hand-free devices, except for bus drivers and new drivers, is still dangerous and distracting.
Engaging in texting while driving or driving while performing other audio-visual tasks, such as dialing a telephone, triples the risk of becoming involved in a car accident according to the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute. A survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that 94 percent of people claimed that texting while driving was unacceptable. However, a third of these drivers admitted to engaging in this behavior.
It seems that there are new trends happening all the time, and with the near complete reach of the Internet, these trends are catching on with surprising speed. Some of these trends are relatively harmless, like posting pictures of food to Instagram, but others are much more serious. It goes without saying that distracted driving is incredibly dangerous, but many people in Bridgeport may not realize that this is more than just talking or texting. The newest distraction for young drivers? Taking a selfie.