Don't Text and Drive Blog

Do Reminders Really Stop Texting And Driving?

Posted by Robert Edgin on Sun, Apr 06, 2014 @ 02:45 PM

Our TXTNG KILLS phone guards were recently featured in a news story that ran in Denver. While we're not sure how the journalist found our phone guard, we are sure about the message - reminding drivers NOT to text and drive really does work!

Good habits take time time to form  - about 21 days. If you do something repeatedly for 21 straight days your mind will accept it as a habit and make it a part of your daily life. Exercise routines and diet programs work this way. Stopping smoking works this way, and not texting and driving works this way too. If you can make it 21 days in a row, you've formed a new habit to better your life. When it comes to the habit of texting and driving, you might be saving your life too!

But making it through those first 21 days isn't always easy. Your phone makes a noise while you're driving down the road and your eyes are immediately drawn to the screen to see who needs you. Texts and phone calls let you know you're needed and important and most people can't help but look to see who needs them. It's human nature, but it's also the cause of thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of injuries every single year across the United States.

Texting and driving is illegal in 43 states (what the heck is wrong with the other 7 states?) yet the number of texting and driving accidents has not declined much over the past few years.If you're like most people, you need more than laws to keep you from texting and driving.

TXNT KILLS Phoneguard

You need some new habits! To help get you through those first 21 days, try using a TXTNG KILLS phone guard that will actually prevent you from texting while driving. Even the act of taking the wrist band off of your wrist and using it as a phone guard on your phone will form the opinion in your mind that texting and driving is a bad thing. The reminder alone will decrease your urge to text and drive. 

You may also need to put the phone in your glove box, turn off the ringer or power it off completely to avoid the temptation. For the first 21 days, you need to do whatever it takes! You could also designate someone as your texter when you're driving. Get your kids involved and let them text for you. It will keep them occupied AND set a good example about the seriousness of texting and driving. The whole "do as I say and not as I do" attitude doesn't work with kids and texting and driving. If they see you do it, you can be pretty sure they're going to do it too!

There has never been a better time than right now to start forming the habit of being a text free driver. Thanks to the Denver news, there will hopefully be less people on the road texting today than there were yesterday. If you need help, get a texting wrist band/phone guard. It may be the best $1.50 you ever spend. Get one for every driver in your house and start forming good habits together. You'll all be safer and you'll be making the roads safer for everyone else too!

To see the Denver news story, go to http://denver.cbslocal.com/2014/04/03/colorado-drivers-targeted-in-campaign-to-curb-texting-driving/#.U0F-7kekGTI.facebook 

To get your TXTNG KILLS wrist band/phone guard, go to  Click me

Tags: don't text and drive, texting and driving accidents, texting thumb bands, teen texting and driving accident, texting while driving, texting and driving awareness, texting and driving laws

Make It Stop: Companies Fight Texting and Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 @ 12:58 AM

Of the 2 trillion text messages sent each year, too many are sent from moving vehicles. The 1drving texting resized 600 CDC stats on distracted driving are alarming, so much so that private corporations are stepping up to the plate. It's not just non-profits and Ad Councils promoting safer behavior, BMW and AT&T have both launched campaigns designed to curb distracted driving. Given the dangers involved and the consequences of any accident involving a motor vehicle, you wouldn't think we'd need advertising to know better. Sadly, too many of us just aren't paying attention.

One in Three Text and Drive

In this case, the stats aren't lying. But, if you claim you don't text and drive, you might be. According to a recent survey by the CDC on distracted driving, 31 percent of American drivers admitted to sending or reading an email or texting while driving in the past 30 days. Here's one example of our European counterparts outsmarting us, rates in most countries across the pond are much lower. How does that translate to accidents? Almost 20 percent of accidents in 2010 involved a distracted driver. The likelihood of getting in an accident increases 23 times while texting and driving. So, aside from the laws making texting while driving illegal, it's downright dangerous. Thankfully, automakers and phone companies are stepping up in an effort to make our drivers and our roads safer.

BMW Takes a Stand

With support from Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, BMW North America stepped up with a multi-platform campaign in 2011 including TV, digital, radio and print to educate drivers about the dangers of texting while driving. The campaign was titled "Don't TXT & Drive" and pulled on the heartstrings of every parent. It reminded drivers what's at stake with their family in the car and their attention not on the road. That's sure to make you feel better about buying a BMW. Even if you're considering a used BMW, it's nice to know they're taking action.

AT&T Has Something to Say

So an automaker is hoping to stop the danger of texting and driving, what about the cell phone companies? Data plans are growing and smartphones are as popular as they've ever been. AT&T isn't just doing an advertising campaign, they created an interactive exhibit for high-school students that toured the country. In 2010, the company launched the campaign titled "It Can Wait" asking drivers if the last text they read or sent was worth causing a serious accident. If that wasn't enough to drive the point home, they also featured parents of teens killed in accidents and injured accident survivors. It's hard to argue with the sight of a paralyzed teen or a crying parent. In 2013, they followed up by creating a simulator and taking it to high-school students, visiting Ohio to coincide with the state's new law banning texting while driving.

What About You?

Now that you've heard what BMW, the CDC and AT&T have to say about texting and driving, what's your takeaway? You're controlling a hunk of metal hurtling down the road at upward of 60 miles per hour. It doesn't matter how many airbags you have or how good your ABS is, the best safety feature in your car sits behind the wheel— it's you. Keeping your attention on the road and your eyes on the oncoming traffic is the surest way to keep you and your passengers safe. If you or someone you know or love is texting and driving, it needs to stop. For your sake, for your passenger's sake, and for everyone else's on the road with you.

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

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

"I Wish I Never Saw It" - By London Parent

Posted by Robert Edgin on Tue, Jan 15, 2013 @ 05:46 PM

I often times forget that texting and driving is a worldwide problem and not just something we have to deal with here in the United States. This email from London was a stark reminder of the deadly consequences of texting and driving, both here and abroad.

"Today is january 10th and at 50 yrs old I saw something I never want to see ever again.
this was the saddest day I have lived. I got a job at a place that processes smashed cars and trucks and vans. Its the step before the scarp heap or resold to a place for parts

I did see a lot of blood in cars and knowing it was adults it really does not bother me too much. I was sent to an area sectioned off as the "death row" i saw horrible damage and you can tell why they call it this, everyone dies in these crashes. exposed transmissions and engines some cut open by jaws of life some with stained bandages and a lot of blood dried everywhere.

I saw a van that looked like it got a t bone hit on the passenger side and drivers door was hit also this impact was easily 100 km per hour. When I looked in the passenger rear sliding door window I found a infant car seat. Straps were cut to remove the child, the cuts were very frantic like a person trying very hard to cut them. The baby seat was half its original width in the middle and was obviously twisted out of shape from the impact. Then as I looked closer the brown car seat was covered in blood which dries reddish brown and the inside roof had a blood splatter above where the seat was originally sitting the blood was a high speed platter. and then as I looked away i saw a teething ring beside the seat. this child was less than a year old.

I lost it right then and there i just sat down and cried. this was so overwhelming. I have seen a lot of death in my life and a lot of accidents when I drove limo. but this was a whole new sight for me, I don t know how first responders do it. I wouldn't last long as a paramedic.

I regained my composure and told my boss what i saw out back and he said yeah that one bothers even the toughest guys in the yard thats why it is way in back. I asked what caused the crash and he said the guy that brought it in on the flat bed tow truck told him it was a texting thing. The parent was sending a message and drove into a intersection with a red light got hit at the rear passenger door first and hit by second truck on the drivers door. he said they did not die on impact, but both died in a few hours and it really bothered everyone that saw the inside. very few dry eyes.

I have used my phone while driving because i thought it was important at the time. but after today the phone goes completely off from now on. I never ever want to be the person responsible for this kind of destruction. I hope more people follow my lead on this. NO MORE TEXTING AND DRIVING our children and babies are getting killed because of this.

London Parent"

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

New Crash Infographic - Texting and Driving

Posted by Robert Edgin on Fri, Nov 16, 2012 @ 11:34 AM

Infographics are becoming more and more popular, and for a very good reason. They share information in an easy to understand format, using both information and graphics (hence the term infographic). I recently came across the following infographic that demonstrates - again - the dangers of distracted driving and texting and driving. Take a look.

Infographic: Car Accident Statistics
Infographic authored by the Austin car injury lawyers of the Law Offices of Vic Feazell, P.C..

Tags: don't text and drive, no texting while driving, texting and driving accidents, texting and driving statistics, texting thumb bands

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

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

Eric Okerblom's Story, A Texting And Driving Tragedy

Posted by Robert Edgin on Mon, Jun 25, 2012 @ 12:57 AM

All texting and driving accidents are preventable. Most texting and driving accidents causeEric Okerblom injuries and some end in tragedy. We've heard many, many stories from people who have either been injured in texting and driving accidents or lost a loved one because of someone's texting and driving. Eric Okerblom's story, shared with us by his mom, Eilene, is one that ends in tragedy. Here is what Eilene shared about her son:

"By any measure, 19 year old Eric Okerblom was a remarkable man. While still in high school he had already developed as an artist and a musician, earned seven varsity letters, and was a National Merit Finalist. In a single weekend he both ran the LA Marathon (without training) and presented his original research at a youth scientific symposium. He dabbled in beekeeping, was intrigued by carnivorous plants, loved mountains, enjoyed photography, and rocketed on a snowboard. Eric was wise, gentle, sensitive, and genuine; a quiet leader who was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" by his senior class. Despite all of his gifts, Eric was humble and grateful. Eric was the rare, enlightened person you would want for a friend.

In the summer of 2009, Eric studied and traveled in Nicaragua with his life's love, Holly. Soon he Eric Okerblomwould return to the University of California at Berkeley to resume his studies in Molecular Biology. He was very committed to improving this world. The Tour de France had just ended and Eric became enamored with cycling. He was intent on joining the Cal cycling team in the fall.

On July 25, 2009, Eric was bicycling on a straight, unobstructed, country road. Although visible for hundreds of yards, he was violently struck and killed by a distracted teenage driver who neither swerved nor braked. Subsequent subpoena of phone records revealed driver texting had occurred in the immediate proximity of the collision. This beautiful life was extinguished and our family and community diminished from entirely unnecessary diver distraction."

Texting and driving takes lives and ruins lives. It is illegal in most states and deadly in all of them. Make the smart choice and put away your phone when you get into your car. For more information on the Eric Okerblom foundation, visit http://www.eofoundation.net/

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