Don't Text and Drive Blog

Teen Guide To Driving - No Texting and Driving Allowed!

Posted by Robert Edgin on Fri, Apr 04, 2014 @ 11:03 AM

Guide to Teen Car Insurance and Driver Safety

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We all know teen drivers pose a higher risk behind the wheel than older drivers with more experience, but most teens and parents aren’t aware of what those risks mean. High auto insurance premiums might be the least of a parent’s worries if their son or daughter is involved in a serious accident. Consider the facts: Over a quarter of a million teenage drivers were rushed to the ER due to car accidents in 2010, and nearly one out of every one hundred of them died due to their injuries. These statistics from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Teen Driver Fact Sheet should be enough to keep teens and parents vigilant about safe driving, but each year the trend continues.

The CDC also reports that teen drivers are three times more likely to be involved in an accident than drivers over the age of twenty. It’s no wonder car insurance premiums for teenagers are through the roof. Fortunately, the CDC and other agencies have developed sound strategies to keep teens safe on the road – strategies that also keep their rates affordable.

 

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How to Prepare Teens for Driving

  • Driver’s Education Courses and Programs
    • Most adult drivers have internalized their driving habits; so, when trying to teach “instincts” to sons and daughters, parents probably won’t be as effective as you might hope. No parent can substitute for a professional driving instructor.
    • Tip for parents: Your local department of licensing or department of motor vehicles may offer courses and educational materials to help, and private lessons are readily available across the country. Be sure to go with an accredited or well-established driving instructor, as some fly-by-night instructors might only waste your money and impart few long-lasting skills.
  • Learner’s Permit and Driving With Parental Supervision
    • Most states require new drivers to obtain a learner’s permit before they can apply for their license, with the majority of states requiring a certain number of parent-supervised driving hours logged and recorded by the parent.
    • Tip for parents: Remember to take time to pull over, take a deep breath, and discuss your teen’s driving errors and successes. Particularly if your teen driver is making your blood pressure skyrocket, take a moment to calm yourself so you can be the most effective teacher possible and foster a good environment for them to learn.
  • Websites, Mobile Apps, and Car Accessories for Safe Driving
    • While it may seem counterintuitive, some smartphone apps can help teens drive more safely and with fewer distractions. A few apps of this type operate on a simple premise: lock down the phone’s texting, calling, or browsing functions until the car is at a stand still.
    • Allstate offers informative and entertaining videos and games to capture teens’ attention and educate them about safe driving.
    • Tip for parents: Ask your insurer about GPS units, dashboard cameras, and other gadgets to track your teen’s driving. Such devices, which are readily available online, not only notify the parent by text or email when their teen driver strays a certain distance from home, they also notify parents when the teen exceeds certain speed limits, drives erratically, or is involved in an accident. Many major insurers offer these devices, or provide discounts for families who purchase and install them on their cars.
  • Safe Driving Pledges and Contracts
    • Create a safe driving contract with your teen driver, and have them sign it to acknowledge their commitment to road safety. Setting down specific guidelines and agreements will keep them aware of right and wrong, and will set specific consequences if they break the contract.
    • The Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles provides a sample contract as a foundation for your agreement with your teen driver.

Rules of the Road

Even the best education on safe driving will be useless if your teen driver isn’t aware of the rules of the road – both the laws and regulations around operating a motor vehicle, and the unwritten rules of the road for safe driving habits.

  • New Driver Laws
    • Curfews: Many states impose curfews on drivers under the age of 18, which can vary between weeknights and weekends. Check with your local DMV to see what regulations apply at the state or local level.
    • Seatbelts: While seatbelts are required for drivers and passengers in nearly all states, certain states will issue tickets to any unbuckled passengers as well as the driver. To avoid a hike in car insurance premiums after such a violation, make sure your teen is requiring that their friends buckle up and that they only carry as many passengers as there are seatbelts in the car.
  • What to Do if a Police Officer Pulls Over Your Teen Driver
    • Rehearse the procedure in advance. Walk through the following steps with your teen to prepare them for getting stopped by an officer.
    • Keep all current registration and insurance cards in an easy to find place. A brightly colored envelope or pouch in the glove box works well.
    • Keep hands on the wheel, stay calm. When a police officer pulls over a vehicle and sees people moving around, shuffling in their seats, or fidgeting inside the car, officers are trained to suspect the worse: weapons, drugs, or illegal materials in the car, and your teen will not like the officer’s reaction. Wait for the officer to approach the car, and when the officer asks for license, insurance, and registration, tell the officer “I’m going to open the glovebox for the documents” before doing so.
    • Be polite, give brief answers, and only speak when spoken to. Most teens have difficulty acknowledging their mistakes, and arguing with a police officer over an “unfair” ticket is not the best way to get off with a verbal warning.
    • Apologize, and say “please” and “thank you.” In most cases, an officer has discretion to give a driver a ticket, written warning, or verbal warning. A simple apology and common courtesies can go a long way towards keeping your teen driver’s record clean.
  • What to Do in Case of an Accident
    • Pull off the roadway, turn on hazard lights. Get to a safe spot on the side of the road or in a parking lot before exiting the vehicle. Never stop in the middle of the road or intersection.
    • Call 911 or the local police department, even if it is a minor accident. Having a police report on what actually happened will be invaluable to document the case later on, even for a minor fender bender.
    • Exchange information. The name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, license plate, vehicle year/make/model for all drivers involved in the accident, including any witnesses or passengers. For the other driver, also get their insurance company, policy number, and claims phone number, which can be found on their auto insurance card.
    • Don’t make any admissions of fault. Accidents can be traumatic and unsettling, so you can’t be sure what happened immediately after the fact. Leave it up to the police, witnesses, and insurers to say who had the right of way and who was at fault.
    • Take pictures of everything at the scene of the accident. All involved vehicles, license plates, the whole road or intersection, a wide angle shot showing the whole scene, as well as close-ups of the damage to vehicles.
    • Get statements from witnesses. Written down, recorded on video or audio, and keep track of the witnesses’ names and phone numbers. They can be called on later for official statements if needed for a legal dispute.
    • After everything has calmed down and everyone has gone home, decide whether to file a claim, and whether to call your insurer. See if you can work with the other involved drivers to handle it off insurance to keep your teen driver’s rates low. Be sure to document all damage, repairs, and expenses in case you need to open up a claim should the cost of repairs skyrocket. Most insurers will still handle a claim even if you’ve taken some steps towards managing it yourself, so long as they can investigate and keep track of everything.
  • Underage Drinking and Driving
    • A serious risk: According to the CDC, in 2010, 22% of drivers aged 15 to 20 involved in fatal motor vehicle crashes were under the influence of alcohol. While many parents may want to believe their children would never drink and drive, the CDC further reports that “In a national survey conducted in 2011, 24% of teens reported that, within the previous month, they had ridden with a driver who had been drinking alcohol and 8% reported having driven after drinking alcohol within the same one-month period.”
    • Guilt by association. In many states, if a teen driver is transporting an underage passenger who has been drinking, both the passenger and driver can be ticketed for underage drinking, even if the driver is completely sober. Check your state’s regulations and contact your local DMV for more information on what rules apply.
    • Have a serious talk with your teen. Make sure they know that they can call you to get a ride if their friends have been drinking, and that they should never ride with an intoxicated friend or get behind the wheel with alcohol in their system.

Teens and Car Insurance

Teen drivers account for some of the highest premiums among all drivers, and while the statistics indicate that teens do pose a higher risk than older drivers, there are a handful of steps you can take to keep your family’s premiums low.

  • Ways to Save Money on Car Insurance for Teen Drivers
    • “Good student” discounts. Your insurer may offer discounts for good report cards, typically A’s and B’s or a GPA above 3.5. Quite simply, studious drivers are seen as more responsible and lower-risk drivers than those with poor grades.
    • Keep your teen driver on the family policy. This will offer your teen lower rates than if they buy their own auto insurance policy.
    • Remove them as a driver from certain vehicles. If your teen will be limited to driving the family minivan, have them removed from driving the family’s other vehicles. This will cause them to be uninsured in the event they get behind the wheel of another family car, so keep in mind which car they’re allowed to take out on Saturday night.
    • Driving safety courses. Many insurers offer discounts to teen drivers who complete a driver safety course. Ask your insurer what options are available.
    • Dashboard cameras and tracking devices. Many insurers offer discounts to families who install “black box” recording devices, GPS trackers, and dash-mounted cameras in their teen’s cars.
    • Choose your teen’s car carefully. Certain car models offer varying safety ratings, have higher or lower cost of repairs, and subsequently cost more or less to insure, even among similar models from different manufacturers. Research rate quotes for various different models before settling on a car for your teen driver.

Never Stop Teaching & Learning

Whether your teen driver is just getting their permit, or is ready to head off to college, take some time to review your teen’s driving habits, safety practices, and accident preparedness. By checking with your insurer about possible discounts and driver education courses, you may be able to both improve your teen’s driving safety and lower your car insurance rates at the same time.

Thank you, www.simpledollar.com, for sharing the above article with us! As a reminder and addition to all of the tips in the guid above, please do not text and drive! To see the full article directly on the simpledollar website, visit: http://www.thesimpledollar.com/carinsurance/teen-drivers/

Tags: texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, teen texting and driving accident, texting while driving, texting and driving awareness, texting and driving laws

Texting And Driving Kills More Teens Than Drinking And Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Wed, May 15, 2013 @ 11:39 PM

By now, you've probably been hearing about the deadly consequences of texting and driving texting and driving for at least a year or two. Stories of accidents, near accidents, injuries and deaths are in the headlines almost daily. Police are issuing tickets, cell phone companies are running commercials, and yet a new study shows that texting and driving is now the number one killer of teens, surpassing drinking and driving and killing more than 3,000 teens per year. Here's the story as reported by CBS:

"Texting while driving has now surpassed drinking and driving as the leading cause of death among teens, according to a new study.

More than 3,000 teens die annually from texting while driving, compared to about 2,700 for driving under the influence of alcohol, according to a study by Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park.

Despite a national ad campaign and a national dialogue on the dangers, the study reveals stunning new numbers: 50 percent of students text while driving and half of high school kids who drive said they text behind the wheel, CBS 2′s Carolyn Gusoff reported.

“The reality is kids aren’t drinking seven days per week — they are carrying their phones and texting seven days per week, so you intuitively know this a more common occurrence,” Dr. Andrew Adesman, Chief Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Cohen Children’s Medical Center told Gusoff.

Adesman, the chief author of the study, found that laws against texting while driving are not effective. Fifty-seven percent of boys said they text while driving in states with texting laws, and 59 percent said they text while driving in states that don’t have texting laws, according to the study.

Many are not surprised by the results.

“People are texting and driving all the time,” one man told WCBS 880′s Mike Xirinachs. “I don’t know the exact way to do it, but something’s gotta be done.”

“Every single day I see it,” one driver said. “People driving along, texting, talking on their phone. They’re not supposed to do it, but they do it — kids, grown-ups, everybody does it.”

“I’ve seen it firsthand, it does cause accidents, it’s dangerous and it’s irresponsible,” a former police officer told 1010 WINS’ John Montone. “A vehicle is a weapon, just as a gun or a knife, and you can kill people. You don’t deserve to have a driver’s license and that level of responsibility where you can kill people if you’re not willing to take precautions, such as not texting and driving.”

Statistics show that if you are communicating by text while driving a vehicle, you are 23 times more likely to crash.

Some schools have been taking measures to make sure its students stay safe. Students at the New York Institute of Technology in Old Westbury and Freeport High School participated in driving simulations demonstrating the dangers of texting behind the wheel. Teachers are also taking matters into their own hands by sending their students a strong message about the deadly consequences of texting while driving.

Manhattan schoolteacher Julius Khan said he tells his students to “think about your mother and father crying over your grave or someone’s else grave that you’re responsible for killing.”

“Pay attention to what you’re doing because the life you save could be your own,” Khan added.

Lawmakers have also been pushing for tougher distracted driving laws.

In March, Long Island State Senator Charles Fuschillo proposed harsher penalties for distracted drivers, including increased fines for talking or texting on a cellphone and stricter measures for repeat offenders.

“It goes up to $400 but all the penalties in the world aren’t going to stop someone from being irresponsible,” Fuschillo said.

One possible solution is more widespread use of phone apps that restrict texts and calls from coming in when it detects the phone is in a moving car, Adesman said."

For the original story, visit: http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/05/09/study-texting-and-driving-kills-more-teens-annually-than-drinking-and-driving/

Tags: don't text and drive, texting and driving statistics, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, teen texting and driving accident, texting while driving

A Conversation With The Huffington Post About Texting While Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Tue, Feb 26, 2013 @ 12:33 PM

We were fortunate to be invited by the Huffington Post to participate in a live conversation about teen driving and whether the driving age should be raised from 16 to 18 in the US. Our opinion is NOT that the driving age should be raised, but that there should be more parental and school involvement to promote text free driving and distraction free driving among teen drivers.

The truth is that ALL ages should focus more on text free driving, but the show was focused on teen drivers. We were one of 4 panelists involved in the conversation. Take a look and let us know what you think, do you think teen drivers should have to wait until age 18 to get an unrestricted license?

Here is a link to the Huffington Post interview. (it seems as though you have to mute the live feed in the top left corner or it plays at the same time as the interview):

http://live.huffingtonpost.com/#r/segment/teen-drivers-automobile-accidents-death/512a6a6002a7602846000793

Tags: texting and driving accidents, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, teen texting and driving accident, texting and driving bans

Can Gamification Improve Teen Driving And Stop Texting And Driving?

Posted by Robert Edgin on Fri, Feb 22, 2013 @ 02:56 PM

It's easy to vilify games as distractions or time wasters, but it's not always a black and whiteTeen Driver debate.Gamifyingis the practice of adding a gaming element to an activity, and it can be quite effective. By adding stakes or points to otherwise tedious practices, you incentivize achievement. Gamificationcan be as simple as turning a lesson into a challenge or as complicated as rethinking your entire life.

Memorizing the rules of the road is necessary, but uninteresting to a teenager. Even though there's no real world benefit, there is a satisfaction to winning a game. So how can you marry the appeal of a game with something tedious or unappealing to get the result you want from your teen driver?

GamifyDriving Lessons

First, remember that you hold the power. Sure teens are headstrong and over-confident about their abilities, butyouhold the purse-strings. You own the car, maintain the insurance and provide the living quarters. Driving is a responsibility, so tie it in to everyday life if you think your teen will best respond to that. Or, make driving its own game.

Assign positive point values to desirable behaviors like:

  • Coming to a complete stop in reverse before shifting into drive.
  • Using turn signals and checking blind spots appropriately.
  • Parallel parking successes.
  • Stopping for yellow lights rather than speeding up.

Assign negative point values to problematic behaviors like:

  • Even picking up a cell phone while operating a vehicle or texting and driving (make this a big deduction).
  • Overly passive or overly aggressive passing and merging.
  • Speeding.
  • Brake slamming.
  • Rolling through stops.

Once you've established point values create standards, rewards and consequences. Are privileges suspended or limited at a certain level? Is curfew extended for a high score? Every family and every driver will be a little different but the underlying idea is the same. Constant feedback, both negative and positive, will let the driver know what they're doing right and what they can improve on. Driving is a serious responsibility in which, unlike games, you don't get unlimited lives.

Improving Basic Skills

Gamers have long asserted that they develop skills like increased hand-eye coordination and tactical thinking skills from games. It's been oft discussed and plenty of research has been done to back that up, though it's hard to know if encouraging your teen to spend more time playing Halo will noticeably impact driving performance.

World renowned game developer Jane McGonigal,PhD says "gameplay is extremely productive." She continues, in an op-ed piece contributed to The Guardian, "it does produce the positive emotions scientists say are crucial to our health and success." What does that mean for your teen driver? Well, McGonigal posits that " we are more likely to help someone in real life after we've helped them in a co-operative game." I don't know about you, but I'd rather drive next to a confident and cooperative driver, rather than an aggressive and selfish one. If a little extra (appropriate) gaming will lend itself to better driving and everyday behavior... well I say go for it.

Dont forget the rewards for winning the game. One reward could be a texting thumb band, wrist band or t shirt! Not only is it a reward, it's a great reminder NOT to text and drive! Find some great rewards in the Safety Store:

Click me

Tags: no texting while driving, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, teen texting and driving accident, texting and driving awareness

Parents Have to Let Go...Of Their Car Keys

Posted by Robert Edgin on Mon, Dec 10, 2012 @ 12:37 PM

Whether you like it or not, your baby is growing up fast. It's already time to give your teenDon't Text And Drive driving lessons and frequent the DMV. They will be begging you for their first car (or borrow yours, every minute of every day). I know giving your teen car keys is very stressful, and somewhat unnerving due to the terrible accidents from drunk driving and texting while driving. If you communicate and stress the importance of no texting while driving and set certain guidelines beforehand, giving your teen their first set of car keys will be a little less stressful, knowing you've taken every precaution possible to warn them about the dangers (and safety) of driving.

First, your teen needs to understand driving a car isn't a right it's a privilege. When they're behind the wheel they are operating a potentially deadly weapon. And with power comes great responsibility; thus the need for auto insurance.

Here are some rules and guidelines your teen should follow if they want to start driving on their own:

Friend Limit

State how many people are allowed in their car. The less people the better. Immediately, your teens friends will start wanting rides to school, the movies, the mall and the more friends your teen has in their car, the more distractions, which increases the chance for an accident. A good number is two. Allow your teen to have up to two passengers in the car at all times, no exceptions.

Absolutely NO Texting While Driving

According to the Centers for Disease Control, in 2009 an estimated 5,400 people died and 448,000 people were injured in car crashes involving a distracted driver. You want to know what the most common distraction was? Cell phone use and texting. It's no wonder some states have taken to the law and made talking and texting while driving illegal. There is no reason for your teen to be answering calls or texting while driving. Explain to them if it's an emergency to pull over to a parking lot or the side of the road and use their phone. Never while the vehicle is in motion.

How to Act if They're Pulled Over

Whether you want to admit it or not, everyone at some point or another will be pulled over. Teach your teen how to respond when they are pulled over and to never get defensive. Be polite to the officer and when he approaches you, calmly state for his badge number and let him know you are verifying he is indeed a police officer. If he is, he won't mind that you're making sure you keep yourself protected. Have your drivers license, vehicle registration and proof of insurance ready. When speaking with an officer, speak clearly, don't make excuses and always use appropriate language.

Make Sure They Understand There Will Be Consequences if Rules Are Broken

If you find the rules you've set (friend limit, where your teen can and can't drive, etc.) were broken, they need to know immediately that the behavior will not be tolerated. You should take away their car, video game and Internet privileges. If you do, they are most likely never going to break your rules again.

Top Cars for First-Time Drivers

According to Cars.com, here's a list of top cars for first-time drivers:

  • 2012 Kia Soul-It's a great value for the money (starting at $13,900) and is tech-savvy enough your teen will want to be seen in it.

  • 2012 Hyundai Accent-The best deal for first-time drivers who want to use their own money to purchase a brand-new car. Starting at $13,320, this car get's the most bang for the buck and has great fuel efficiency.

  • 2012 Honda Civic-The Honda Civic is a tried and true car that has been driven by millions of drivers throughout the years. Starting at $15,605, it's a little more expensive but remains a top seller, so you know the car will be worth the extra dough.

There are other options available for your teen, just do the research on cars and choose the best fit for them (and make sure their safety features are up-to-date, with great reviews).

Authored by: Pete Morris A gentle giant, Pete is a high school basketball coach, painter and car mechanic. He has been fixing cars since he was 13 and loves saving the day when someone's car won't run.

Tags: don't text and drive, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, texting while driving, texting and driving awareness

Teens more likely to text and drive when parents do it, study says

Posted by Robert Edgin on Tue, Oct 23, 2012 @ 03:15 PM

There’s no doubt that distracted driving is an epidemic on our roadways. From texting to Parents text and drive tooeating on the go, distracted driving – no matter which form it takes on – can cause car accident injury and even death. And while most parents strive to teach teens the importance of roadway safety, a new study says some parents are to blame for their teen’s distracted driving including texting from behind-the-wheel.

It’s a classic case of “do what I say, not what I do.”

Liberty Mutual and SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) together studied distracted driving patterns for teens and parents. The study revealed that parents who practiced unsafe driving habits like texting and driving, or talking on the phone, had teens that also practiced the same bad habits behind-the-wheel. Teens were up front about their parents’ bad driving habits, and admitted they tended to pick up on those behaviors when driving alone.

The study showed that nearly two-thirds of teen drivers believed their parents had bad driving habits. Even more alarming, teens said their parents engaged in texting, speeding, and even driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. And while teens acknowledged their parents’ bad judgment, they also admitted to engaging in the exact same behaviors.

Nearly 91 percent of teens witnessed their parents talking on their cell phone, and 90 percent admitted to doing it themselves. When it comes to texting and driving, nearly 59 percent of parents were caught doing it and 78 percent of teens admitted they had done it, too, once they saw their parents engage in the behavior.

Sadly, 20 percent of teens witnessed their parents drive drunk, and 15 percent admitted to doing it as well.

Parent checklist for safe driving

When it comes to distracted driving, the power is in your hands. If you’re a parent concerned about your teen’s driving, here’s what you can do. And teens: if you’ve seen your parents engage in any distracted driving – from cell phone use to texting and beyond – now is the time to voice your concerns. If we want to keep our roadways safe, we’ve got to band together and take action now. Consider the following safety tips:

Get a “safe driving” app

There are several free and low-cost phone apps that can help you build safer driving habits. Some apps can prevent incoming texts from downloading until the vehicle is stopped. That way, the temptation to read the text is eliminated. Get the app for yourself and your teen today.

Use a parent-teen driving contract

A few rules can go a long way. When the expectations are set for your teen, the risk for distracted driving can be reduced – especially when there are consequences for the behavior. When writing the contract, let your teen have a voice, too, and if s/he requires rules for your driving, then write it into the contract as well. Let your example lead the way.

Declutter your car

Radios, GPS, CDs, iPods, in-dash navigation… they can all lead to a deadly car accident, especially when these technologies are combined and used simultaneously while driving. Declutter your car and avoid using more than one or two devices at a time. Show your teen what matters most: eyes on the road, focused on driving.

Distraction beyond the cell phone

Most drivers are well-aware that cell phone use and texting while driving is dangerous. If you don’t use your cell phone while driving, we congratulate you for making our roads a safer place. Take your safety efforts a step further and eliminate common distractions like eating food, applying makeup, or checking emails. Let it wait – the life of you and your teen may depend on it.

Take the Million Pledge Mission

Be a part of the change! Sign our Million Pledge Mission today and commit to being a no-text driver. Sign the pledge now, and get your teen on board, too. And teens: if your parents text and drive, send them the pledge and let them know you want our roads to be a safer place. One at a time, we can make a difference.

Guest Post By: LAW OFFICES OF MICHAEL PINES, APC (Central Office)
4660 La Jolla Village Drive, Suite 1030
San Diego, California  92122
www.SeriousAccidents.com

Tags: texting and driving accidents, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, texting while driving, texting and driving awareness

Allstate Insurance Works With Celebs To Curb Texting And Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Wed, Sep 19, 2012 @ 11:43 PM

We want to send a thank you and give a big shout out to Allstate Insurance for spreading the word about the dangers of texting and driving! Allstate recently teamed up with a whole host of Hollywood celebs to encourage everyone to be text-free drivers:

“The 6th annual Variety Power of Youth event took place this past Saturday, Sept. 15 in Los Angeles, California. Featured was Allstate's XtheTXT campaign to encourage young drivers not to text and drive. During the event, Hollywood's rising stars and others pledged not to text and drive by inking their thumbprints on a Ford Focus wrapped with XtheTXT messaging and imagery. Many young celebrities, including Joe, Kevin and Nick Jonas, Kat Graham, Jordin Sparks, Christian Serratos, Diego Boneta and R.J. Mitte as well as Hollywood and sports legends such as George Lopez and Greg Louganis took the pledge at the event held at Paramount Studios.

Through their activities, celebrities and event-goers spread the XtheTXT message to more than two million people on Twitter and thousands more on Facebook.”

"The celebrities honored at the Variety Power of Youth event are inspiring young people to be responsible behind the wheel by putting the phone down," said Joan Walker, executive vice president of corporate relations at Allstate. "We know that more than 3,000 lives are lost annually because of distracted driving. This simple promise can save thousands of lives."

Way to go Allstate, we're thankful for the help in fighting texting and driving and educating the masses! Now we just need to figure out how we can get some of these super stars to send us some photos wearing their TXTNG KILLS thumb bands or W8 2 TXT thumb bands! Some of the celebrities that signed the pledge were Kat Graham and George Lopez plus many more young and up and coming stars.

Kat Grahamdescribe the image


Tags: no texting while driving, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, texting while driving, texting and driving awareness

Infographic For Texting And Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Sun, Sep 16, 2012 @ 06:02 PM

 

We came across a great infographic that demonstrates the statistics of texting and driving along with the dangers it represents. Thanks to onlineschools for creating it!

 

DWI: Driving While Intexticated

Tags: texting and driving accidents, texting and driving statistics, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, texting and driving bans, texting while driving, texting and driving awareness, texting and driving laws

New Statistics For Texting And Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Sat, Sep 15, 2012 @ 01:03 PM

I wish I could report that less people are texting and driving, less people are crashing from distracted driving and less people are being injured or killed in texting and driving crashes, but new studies confirm that it's not true.

2011 Distracted Driving Statistics

Most adults who drive admit to engaging in distracted driving behaviors, according to a HealthDay poll from November 10-14, 2011. More than 2,800 American adults responded to the poll. Results showed the following statistics:

  • Approximately 86% of drivers said they ate or drank while driving at some point, and 57% said they do it “sometimes” or “often.”
  • Over 1/3 of drivers (37%) have sent or received text messages while driving, and 18% said they do it regularly.
  • Forty-one percent of adult drivers have set or changed a GPS system while driving, and 21% do it “more frequently.”
  • Many adult drivers (36%) have read a map while driving, and 10% do it “sometimes” or “often.”
  • One in five drivers have combed or styled his or her hair while driving. One in ten does it regularly.
  • Have you ever seen a driver putting on makeup? Approximately 14% have done it once, and 7% do it frequently.
  • About 13% of adult drivers have surfed the Internet while driving.
  • Results of the poll showed that younger drivers were more likely to engage in distracted driving. Men were more likely to drive while drowsy, drive after drinking, read a map, use a GPS system, and use the Internet.
  • A large percentage of the people said they know distracted driving is dangerous, but do it anyway.

Driver Electronic Use in 2010

  • According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the percentage of drivers who were using a cell phone (texting or manipulating it in some way) increased to 0.9% in 2010.
  • The percentage of drivers using a cell phone while holding it to their ears was 5% in 2010
  • The level of hand-held cell phone use was higher among female drivers than it was for male drivers.
  • Younger drivers ages 16 to 24 were more likely to use a hand-held cell phone.
  • More than three-quarters reported that they were likely to answer calls on all, most, or some trips while driving. They also said that they rarely consider traffic situations when deciding to use their cell phones.
  • There were 3,092 deaths in distraction-related accidents in 2010, but the number is likely much higher.
  • Most drivers said they are willing to answer a call or text while driving, but most of these same drivers said they would feel unsafe as a passenger in a car where the driver was sending or receiving text messages.

Texting While Driving Statistics

  • About 6,000 deaths and a half a million injuries are caused by distracted drivers every year.
  • While teenagers are texting, they spend about 10 percent of the time outside the driving lane they’re supposed to be in.
  • Talking on a cell phone while driving can make a young driver’s reaction time as slow as that of a 70-year-old.
  • Answering a text takes away your attention for about five seconds. That is enough time to travel the length of a football field.

Study Reveals the Dangers of Texting While Driving

The following statistics come from a study conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI):

  • Of all cell phone related tasks – including talking, dialing, or reaching for the phone – texting while driving is the most dangerous.
  • Teen drivers are four times more likely than adults to get into car crashes or near crash events directly related to talking on a cell phone or texting.
  • A car driver dialing a cell phone is 2.8 times more likely to get into a crash than a non-distracted driver.
  • A driver reaching for a cell phone or any other electronic device is 1.4 times more likely to experience a car crash.
  • A car driver talking on their phone is 1.3 times more likely to get into an accident.
  • A truck driver texting while driving is 23.2 times more likely to get into an accident than a trucker paying full attention to the road.
  • A truck driver dialing a cell is 5.9 times more likely to crash.
  • A trucker reaching for a phone or other device is 6.7 times more likely to experience a truck accident.
  • For every 6 seconds of drive time, a driver sending or receiving a text message spends 4.6 of those seconds with their eyes off the road. This makes texting the most distracting of all cell phone related tasks.

Tags: no texting while driving, texting and driving accidents, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, teen texting and driving accident, texting while driving

Why (And How) Abby Whitney Is Trying To Stop Texting And Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Mon, Aug 27, 2012 @ 10:29 PM

We recently asked for testimonials from people who have participated in texting and driving campaigns in their schools. We received a lot of touching responses from people all across the country. Abby's was not only touching, it was inspirational. It moved us. It motivated us. Here is Abby's story:

"I wanted to tell you about the campaign that we started at our school. It all began on December 30, 2011. I lost my 18 year old cousin in a texting and driving accident. She had everything going for her; was a part of NHS, lead scorer on her varsity basketball team, and was accepted into Indiana University where she was scheduled to start this week. On that Friday evening, she was taking a friend home after a day of shopping and she chose to read and respond to a text message. She was not wearing her seatbelt and when she lost control of the minivan she was driving, she was ejected out of the front windshield and was pronounced dead at the scene. Our family was deeply traumatized by this accident and the loss of such a beautiful person.

As I drove home, 5.5 hours, to attend her visitation and funeral, I witnessed many people texting and driving. Each person I saw sparked an anger and frustration and I felt determined to do something about it. Fortunately, I am a teacher at a K-12 public school and knew I had access to the perfect audience. When I returned to school, I was approached by my principal and several teachers who wanted me to tell my family's story to the highschool student body. This is EXACTLY what I wanted.

A week later, while the pain was still deep, an assembly was scheduled where I told my cousin's story. The reaction and response was larger than I had ever anticipated. I had students coming up to me afterwards with tears streaming down their face. I had one student who said to me that texting and driving was something she had always done but never had anything to connect it to. She promised me, on that afternoon, that she would never do it again. I knew that my determination couldn't end on that afternoon. I knew that my family had been too greatly impacted for it to end with that presentation.

After I found out that my cousin's school had ordered thumb bands from your company, I decided to place my own order for the students and faculty at my school. A club at school approached me about wanting to help finance the order and we ordered 500 thumb bands. At that point we were unsure of how we would distribute those thumb bands. Several weeks passed and a plan came together. We entered a contest through Toyota and Discovery Education and came up with a distracted driving campagin. In March, we held another assembly. We presented our students with a pledge that they could sign during lunch that day. The pledge card was geared towards drivers, but on the reverse side were conversation starters. The conversation starters were ways that nondrivers could ask a driver (friend, parent, etc) to put their phone away while they are driving in the car. Each student that signed the pledge received a thumb band. During the assembly we also provided students with information on apps for their phones that could be downloaded to prevent texting while driving.

We ended the assembly with a video message from my cousin's friends. The video reiterated the loss of their friend and how the impact of losing someone you love can be lasting. We ended up coming in second place in the Toyota Teen Driver Contest.

We were awarded with a driving simulator and cash prize, worth a total of over $18,000. With our award, our campaign has gotten even stronger. We have bought wrist bands and lawn signs that help promote our campaign. We set up a campaign booth at a local festival, where we presented our information and sold lawn signs to the public. In June, we were able to offer one of our high school seniors a scholarship in my cousin's honor. Our campaign has taken on a tremendous speed and urgency and I can't believe how far it has come. Now that we have our driving simulator, I am eager to continue spreading awareness and encouraging drivers, young and old, to put their phones away, while behind the wheel. No text is worth your life"

Thank you to Abby, and to everyone else out there working to make a difference and save the lives of teen drivers all across North America. Keep up the good work!

Tags: don't text and drive, no texting while driving, texting and driving accidents, texting thumb bands, teens texting and driving, teen texting and driving accident, texting and driving awareness