DISTRACTED DRIVING AWARENESS MONTH HIGHLIGHTS AN IMPORTANT ISSUE

National Distracted Driving Awareness Month occurs every April and serves to send an important message to Tennessee drivers. The Tennessee Highway Safety Office is encouraging people to post on social media using the hashtag #ThumbsDownTN to spread the message about the dangers of distracted driving, reports WYSH Radio.

Texting is considered one of the most dangerous distractions for drivers as it requires a driver to not only avert their eyes from the road but to use their hands and minds when all of those things should be focused on driving instead. Distracted driving comes in forms other than texting too, however, such as playing with the radio, putting on makeup and even eating. While many people may assume that teens are largely the ones responsible for driving while distracted, it was actually found that distracted driving is a problem across all age groups in Tennessee.

In fact, distracted driving was responsible for almost 12 percent of all crashes in Tennessee in 2015. Distracted driving caused 22,964 accidents on Tennessee roads last year and 51 fatalities resulted from those accidents. 25 people are injured in a crash caused by distracted driving every day. This is despite the fact that, according to Clarksville Online, 96 percent of Tennessee residents who were asked about distracted driving responded that texting while driving was their top concern.

National statistics on distracted driving seem to be in line with the results in Tennessee. Distracted driving was responsible for 18 percent of all crash injuries in 2014 and 10 percent of all crash fatalities. Accidents caused by distracted driving are preventable and National Distracted Driving Awareness Month serves to remind drivers of that fact.

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