Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Teens and Distracted Driving

Back on April 24th, 2012, the Bridgestone Corporation released the results of a survey regarding teenagers and distracted driving. The study found that teens are in denial about safety on the road.

According to the results of that survey, teenaged drivers indicated they are aware of what distracted driving is, but have a belief that they are never actually going to be at risk. This false sense of security is causing our young people to engage in these negative behaviors, and the end result often proves to be deadly.

"Distracted driving is an epidemic on America's roadways, and our youngest drivers are among the most at risk," said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. "I applaud Bridgestone for showing leadership on this issue and encouraging teens to take action against distracted driving.”

Bridgestone surveyed more than 2,000 young drivers, ages 15-21, and found:
• One-third of those surveyed admit to reading text messages while driving;

• Two-thirds of respondents believe they are “very safe” drivers; but only half of them say their parents would agree with that assessment;

• A quarter of those surveyed do not believe that talking on the phone while driving is dangerous;

• Overall, girls engage in distractions behind the wheel far more than boys, and

• Teenagers and young adults say their parents engage in distracted driving more than themselves.

To see more information on the survey and teen driving, visit http://www.teensdrivesmart.com/ sponsored by Bridgestone.

Bridgestone has also launched its annual Teens Drive Smart PSA Contest. The video below was selected as a finalist for 2011. The three winning videos beat out almost 1,500 other entries from 16-21 year-olds across the United States and Canada (excluding Quebec) to become one of the ten finalists. They then secured the most votes from the public to win the grand prize.

As law enforcement officers, we see first-hand the devastation caused by distracted driving. Here in Overland Park, our mission is to make the streets and highways safer for the thousands of motorists who travel on them each day. As far as teenaged drivers on the roadways are concerned, we will continue to do everything we can to protect them through education and enforcement.